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  CSPAN    Politics Public Policy Today    News/Business.  

    January 7, 2013
    8:00 - 1:00am EST  

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u.s. and afghanistan and afghan president karzei visits washington this week. live on c-span every day at 7:00 eastern. >> in a few moments, a discussion about the state of the occupy movement. in an hour and a half, the role of capitalism. after that, google executive, eric schmidt, on how technology affects society. and later, president obama recommended chuck hagel to be defense secretary. >> student camera and video and trees with your message to the president are now due. get them tutsis and by the deadline for your chance at the grand prize of a $5,000. if there is a $50,000 in total prices. for more, go to studentcam.org.
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>> up next, a forum on the occupy movement. this is one hour and a half. [applause] >> thank you very much, everyone, for coming. thank you to the department of political science. today, we have for pronounced -- we have for pamela spirit we will have a bit of discussion between them and then moved to audience discussion. first, deborah is the this -- is a professor of ethics and society. she is also the senior associate dean for the humanities. she is a member of the philosophy department and director for ethics and a
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society. her research focuses on the ethical limits of the markets. a place of equality in a just society and a rational choice. she also works on ethics and at the -- in education. she is co-editor of the forthcoming collection, occupy the future. he is a graduate of mit and an early participant in occupy washington -- occupy boston. he specializes in web applications and design. a co-founder in danger of some in cambridge. -- actually, just in central square. if he continues to be engaged in outspoken protests, malfeasance, and a finance industry mismanagement. and next is phil thompson. actually, he is on the end. an associate professor.
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i'm giving their introductions in the order there will speak. he is a professor at the mit department of urban studies. he is an urban planner and political scientist. -- the deputy manager of the new york housing authority. he is a frequent adviser to trade unions and their efforts to work with immigrants and community groups across the united states. he is the author of a double trouble, black mayors, black communities, and the struggle for democracy. if he is writing a book on community building and development since the 1960's. finally, chris was awarded a pulitzer prize in 2002 as part of a teenage reporter who covered global terrorism. he covered -- he spent almost two decades as a correspondent in latin america. he is the author of many books, including days of destruction, days of revolt, wars that gives meaning, and the best-selling,
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american fascist. he is a columnist and a senior fellow at the institute. so, welcome all of our panelists. let's start with deborah. >> thank you to boston review for organizing this offense. i am happy to be here. i will talk a little bit about the occupy movement. the role of the research that the stanford faculty engaged in. i will talk a little bit about that, connected to occupy. i will talk about what i think occupy accomplished and the future. >> i think that as a guiding question, we can ask, what were the roots of the occupy movement and how far did go and is it continuing to go in fighting the injustices that give rise to it. >> let a bat speed the theme for all of us to comment on.
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from its beginnings in 2011, the occupy movement consistently raise awareness of the glaring inequalities that now categorize the american society and galvanize the forms of public response. the series of largely uncoordinated sit-ins and teachings were held and citizens came together under a contentious and inspired and -- we are the 99%. what is important about that, if is that the actions had an alternative sense that there had to be -- had to be a sense to the alternative status quo. a protest against the poverty of political imagination in the face of the economic crisis that swept the country and the globe in 2008. occupy opened up a wedge for
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changing a conversation and ultimately the direction of politics in the country. was this idea that there was a beginning -- something began. there was a wedge. sometimes it is just important that something begins. that is part of the importance. i will come back to this, that something began. a group of the faculty decided to add up forced to the west by turning their various expertise. we were a group of political scientists, economists, sociologists, and philosophers, artists, literature professors -- to add force to the web by developing a narrative for the broad concerns raised by the occupiers. it is one thing to say there is a lot of growing inequality. then there are questions about what makes the inequality that? why has it happened?
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what can be done to combat it? about 13 of us issued daily short articles on at different topics related to a couple of issues i will talk about. we want to explore the roots of the crisis. yet to explore the resources we have for renewal of economic and political democracy. what was called sources up hope. these essays were published online and are soon to be published in the next month by mit press. so, our riding sought to explain and tie together the main issues that the occupy movement brought to national /international attention, the roots of the occupy movement. first is the deep and the growing divide between the have and have-nots in america. across multiple areas of life,
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health, political influence. we see the grade of inequality the united states has known since the great depression. in this sense, we are the 99% is not just a clever, rhetorical device. it is consistent with data that shows that only the top 1% of all wage earners have seen their incomes rise over the last decade. the next two%-5% have seen flat wages and everyone else has seen a drop in earnings. this has been going on for 30 years but has reached unprecedented levels. the top 1% has claimed nearly all of the growth in income over the past 20 years. if our essays tried to clarify these trends and explain them in prose of that would be available and helpful to people and to analyze the causes of this growing inequality. one source of the act -- of the
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occupy movement is this growing inequality. the second issue that occupy responded to is, i think, as important if not more important than inequality in itself, and that is that extreme inequality is rooted in and itself feels corruption. government interventions of favor the risk -- favor the rich, a lack of buying -- a lack of accountability, and do not address those unlucky enough to be born into poverty. we claim to be a country born into a fair contest, where everyone, no matter how rich or poor, has an opportunity to get ahead. if you work hard and play by the rules will lead a decent life. instead, we find the government bailing out rich wall street bankers and ignoring the rest of the country. we now seem to take for granted
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the educational inequalities in which poor children are under educated or not qualified for college and assigned to lower earnings and unemployment. if the debt is rich rigged -- is residents the poor, it is the opposite for the rich. -- if it is a raid against the poor, it is the opposite for the rich. it is too often that inequality is the product of corruption or unequal opportunity. that is the second source for the unoccupied movement. a third route concerns the crisis in our government in a democracy. meaningful democracy cannot exist when moneyed interests can buy elections and lobby of legislation. for example, 2/3 of americans
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support -- but in a logical fashion in congress is committed to blocking reform in this area. add to this list, concerted efforts to restrict bargaining rights of unions to deprive people of the right to vote and you appreciate the full measure of the democratic crisis we face. fourth and final issue is the challenge of finding a way to manage the economy and provide a good life for everyone. no solution to the problems of climate destruction can be found, the developed world reducing its level of carbon emissions. these four issues and a quality, corruption, inequality, corruption, crisis of democracy, sustainability fuelled the
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occupy movement. what we tried to do was explore and analyze the origins and see what can be done to bring our institutions to enlightenment. we also wanted to bring these four issues together into a narrative. we chose to route our narrative in american ideals of freedom and equality. to say that the ideas of freedom and equality or a lever for which to think about these four issues and begin to identify where we fall short and in our book we try to take up some solutions, including a millionaire's tax, financial regulatory reform, and reforms to the electoral college. i said that one of the things we wanted to do was to take the wedge that was begun by occupy and press on it by developing a
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narrative, in part, because we thought that having a narrative, something beyond just a slogan but actually a narrative that you could begin to take out, to deepen and made accessible to a brought public is a critical part of the story of successful social movements. and so, that is what we tried to do. it was something we could not do that occupy it did. and this, i will turn to, what i think was the value of occupy and where it is going in my last two minutes. so, what occupy did was a began. we cannot underestimate the importance of that action, that beginning, to basically show us that the search for solutions and opposition is in futile. now, you might say, well, it is in a futile.
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some people think, where is occupy now, one year after? i want to say quickly, a couple of things about why i think it is premature to write the obituary of occupy. i think occupy was the beginning, not an ending. there is a lot more to be done, but i want to see why we should not write its obituary. first, there is still significant actions being taken by people inspired by the occupy movement. i will mention one. strike debt, which is an organization started by occupiers which has been buying up -- it has been buying up debt and cancelling it. there is occupy sandy, occupy the fcc -- occupy still goes on. second and most important, significant social change in this country has never come simply by conventional politics. it is never a simple of
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yielding success after success. every social movement has seen flows starting with the anti- slavery movement began in the 1700's which nobody would have ever predicted would end slavery 100 years later. the civil rights movement sought ups and downs. i think that it is important to always know that social movements are not simple narrative of parks of one of success after another. -- arcs of success after another. it is not about occupying space. it is about confronting the enormous challenges we face in america and the globe. if we do not confront of these
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changes, we will not have a future. one way of thinking about maybe the history of the abs and a flows of social movement is to say -- for those who write the demise of this movement, which there is is always a gap or you can have hope. that is the importance of the beginning of the occupy movement. it actually is a source of hope that people responded to the changes in this country that really show that there are cracks that can be exploited. and i will stop. thank you. >> ok. >> she actually took my answer. [laughter] that's what i was going to say. so, there is some good overlap. i guess i will talk a bit about my experience with occupy and start off with a general occupy disclaimer that it has been a
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long time since i was involved in occupy and that is in general when people spoke without any special knowledge or authority over the rest of the group. my early days started in boston when we all came together on the gazebo in the park downtown in boston and tried to imagine when we would do this and how we would put it together. two groups kind of bike for putting off six to eight weeks. new york had taken months to come on line. there had been a lot of planning or should we start on thursday? [laughter] the group who said we should start immediately ended up winning out. i think someone had sat at that meeting that the only way to get that much work done is to then spend several all-nighter is in a row, getting together all of our groups. or food or whenever it is and
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actually hit the ground running on thursday. in my studio of 13-15 people, met for about 72 hours running and we got a tremendous amount of work done in those types of subgroups and we were surprisingly effective when we hit the ground and then i kind of took a media team role beginning to feel our out reach messaging along with several others to put in a lot of hours. i prepared myself for that. i had a press release even now was not sure if it would be useful. lo and behold, it is 4:00 a.m.. there are police cruising around in small numbers and the film crews start showing up. we thought we had done a great job. we made this happen and we
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learned in retrospect that there were all there because they had heard erroneously it would be demonstrated in such a way as to block morning traffic. it was a phenomenal realization for us that going forward making noise would be much more affected than preparing in many cases. -- much more affective then preparing in many cases. we had interviews. something has happened in new york. something has happened internationally. the whole system grew out very quickly. the rest of my time was spent mostly in the kind of messaging and marketing side. i think i realized very quickly as these types of organizations sprang up spontaneously, that there is very little stepping back. but everyone is very close to the issue.
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i try to make sure everyone was connected. they became the singular central node for everyone reporting what each group was doing and in turn became a sub-group in its own right. those people in turn a saint -- changed the system we were using and improved beyond my capacity and began connecting teams and were very proactive in that way. that is my experience with occupy. i did that for several months or so. i got a little burnt out. i was working all day and going back to central square and working to get the work done, as many at occupy work, actually. i think the complaint was that these are unemployed hippies and people without direction and they are not our traditional leaders.
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what that statement has no reject that statement has no merit because anybody in this promise or in our general premise ought to be able to participate. it also had no merit because so many people there had full-time jobs. so, i want to speak to the idea that occupy was leaderless. although i have never said it before today, i think it was leaderful. i think that is true. we were helping one another, teaching one another, supporting one another. in a sense, i think everyone outside of occupy had this feeling that if anyone were to grab the reins and take the initiative, that would make the whole thing crumble. there would be pushed back.
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from within, if you take the initiative, many will follow you and be inspired by that. and then in a turn it will expect that you teach them, bring them up alongside you and eliminate the high art " construction in favor of a network-based form of teaching. in my experience was the organizational behavior for the group to really prove that the model. it showed everything that researchers and theorists have said about node-based, network- based models being better for innovation and a nimble turnaround. in many cases, i would say been better for public activism. so, it was leaderful. we did it. we had a training. i think there were missed
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opportunities around the organizational behavior at side. i am now halfway through with two minutes to go. i will also say that we were a muffled. -- we were aimful. the claim that we had no aim was patently ridiculous. there were so many gameaims. those range from corporate and government malfeasance on the management size and frustration that government seems more interested in appearing leaderful then in any kind of inclusive atmosphere. the list of aims goes way on. a question for me was not about establishing aims or announcing them so the public could be satisfied. at the occupy experience for me was about finding the low-
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hanging fruit. the things that fundamentally contradicted systems of justice that we have all set up in equity where we all assumed it should be all of us. the rich and the poor. if you were to say out loud some of the things that are being done in government and finance, no one would be able to say that they were ok without sharp reprisal. the fact that we do not say these things out loud and to not say them out loud regularly is really the only reason that i can understand that they do not get taken care, dismissed, changed at all. that was my corps participation in occupy. to find these things together and then to find a way to make change together. i will then echo what was said prior to me that nothing went horribly wrong. nothing died. all of these types of movements take a long time.
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if you are particularly patient and particularly crowded in activism and take a 20-year view, a 100-year view, if you are really good, you realize your lifetime does not matter particularly much and you take the 1000-year view. i think there are a number of people who are still involved with occupy and are willing to do that. >> thank you so much. still, let's hear your perspective. -- phil, let's hear your perspective. >> well, in terms of why occupy a rose, i do not have much to add. i think that something dramatic has happened in the last 15 years or so where six banks in the united states now hold 64% or so of total wealth in this country. and i think 15 years ago it was
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something like those same banks held 17%. simon johnson has numbers on this, but i think that is about right. unprecedented concentration of power in a very small number of hands. i think occupy really shone a spotlight on that. i will just say that i think that our current economic and political theories cannot deal with this fact because this was not supposed to happen. american political science is basically pluralist in nature that says the contending forces in society to counter big corporations weather is a big labor union or other kinds of institutions that counter that power of the corporation. but corporations were always
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imagined to be governed by anti- trust laws. there were not supposed to control -- a handful, 64% of all the wealth and the country. that kind of power is just not an imagined and is spending billions of dollars a year lobbying congress. that was not enacted in american political science. i not think american political science has even grappled with what we have now and also our economic theories always present a market economy. marx may have wanted to overthrow competitive capitalism, but citigroup did. when you are too big to fail, that means you're not a market anymore. you are into something else. i do not think in economic theory, either, there are any real answers or ideas for how you deal with a situation like this. i think we are in a new territory.
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i cannot even think of banks have figured out -- the big banks have been out fully how to read it -- how to utilize their power. this is something we all should be extremely concerned about. i think what occupy did was sense something dramatic was happening and seized the moment. in terms of the future of occupy, i would say for movements right now dealing with his intense concentration of power, i think occupy was the beginning.
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we have to fight around regulatory changes that businesses need in order to get things done whether it is a zoning approval for a tax abatement for a utility service plan or any number of things that businesses come to governments for in seeking approval. we have to organize a shareholder power. one of the interesting things about these big banks and other big corporations now, they are public. they do not literally own 64% of the well of america. it is all of our wealth, but we are not organized. we tend to think of politics as voting for politicians. we do not tend to think of it as voting for shareholders. i think we need to radically spend a notion of politics. the last thing i want to say was that i you occupy as essentially
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a movement and an awakening of young students and people. that is a great thing. a >> it's a political awakening. i do think in order to really deal with change and to make change in america, we have to think about how occupy or these predominantly young white activists connect to other movements that are fighting for or could be fighting in the same trenches along for the same things and i specifically just want to talk about movements of people of color and potential linkages here. and many folks have a mythology of what the civil rights movement was about and tend to
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forget it was be desegregation and people wanted to go it to schools and ride on buses. the 1963 march on washington was a march for jobs and freedom, jobs was number one. before martin luther king gave the i have a dream speech in washington, he gave to the a.f.l.c.i.o. in 1961. we don't need two movements. if you would agree to desegregate unions, we would have one movement. they rejected him and rejected that offer. andy young tells a story in the introduction to a book called "the closing door" and he says, you know, after king was assassinated, the johnson administration came with affirmative action and at the time, you may have read if not
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remembered, the civil rights movement, martin luther king had turned to full employment and poor people's campaigns as a principal demand. and the johnson administration, rather than coming up with full employment came up with affirmative action. you won't see eyes on the prize, black people marching on the street demanding affirmative action. they were demanding full employment and trying to reach out to whites, latinos, native americans, that was the division. when affirmative action happened, we knew it would only help the upper middle class within the black community, a very small percentage of african-americans kids were going to go to these elite colleges that affirmative action was targeted and would benefit from it. we were scared of being ostracized or attacked so we backed down and just accepted that. he said we knew that poverty
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would remain in these basic issues of economic injustice would remain. i say this to say that movements can be do railed. they can be intimidated. they can be distracted and generally in america, we tend to just follow the pattern of decentralized government which is a form of moderated anarchy and we tonight really work hard as cooperating together, period. we all kind of get excited with local empowerment and having our voices heard and whatever we're doing and we don't think build big strong movements capable of taking on concentrated power. that's wrapped to the civil rights movement. we have thousands of community development organizations in communities of color. we have lots of local environmental justice organizations. we have lots of this local empowerment. we do not have a movement
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anymore. i think it's important in terms of learning lessons that we not just replicate that all the time, not to just say we tonight need local empowerment and local ingenuity and all of that, that will not be enough to take on the concentrated power that exists in this country right now. last, i just want to say, i think there are many opportunities for linking the folks who have been involved with occupy and the kinds of fishatives that debra was talking about were very serious issues going on in communities of color right now that could really be sinner gistic. i'll mention 9,000 african-american homeowners in detroit are ewing morgan stan ri, people who lost their homes due to foreclosure. this is not just going after the originators of their mortgages, but wall street, the secondary port market, the folks would manipulated this stuff and that is direct connection between what occupy was fighting around and african-americans who were disproportionately, seven times
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more lost their homes than white americans, for example. many predominantly african-american cities and cities predominant with people of color are teetering on bankruptcy, many of them were sold bad goods, bad financial products just as were homeowners, birmingham, alabama, is an example. so whole cities are on the brink of bankruptcy and that, too, can be part of a movement connected to these issues. immigration, the lack of immigration reform means that there are 12 million undocumented immigrants in this country would do not have access to health insurance. at the get sick and at the die just like everybody and where do at the go? they go into hospitals in inner city communities largely because to get treated and why are they treated? if you don't treat people with
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t.d. and other diseases, everybody gets sick, at the get treated, but tees hospitals don't have funding to pay for it. they're not covered by medicaid, medicare, these are hospitals that people of color rely generally in inner city communities. so this is a crisis. if folks who were involved in occupy can make the link and see how it is affecting immediately these same issues, how it plays out if communities of color, i think there are very powerful is synergies that can be built to build a stronger movement and also i want to say that i'm very hopeful. the dream of a unified movement is a dream that's been around, i think, since the underground railroad, but i think we have to be real honest. we have neverton that. we have neverton that. perhaps the election of obama really what i take from it as positive, i think a lot of
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people apower to that -- aspire to that right now. this is the time. it's an historic opportunity and as some philosopher said, danger and opportunity tend to come together. we have both right now. >> let's hear your words. >> well shall the occupy movement was the first pofment if recent history to respond rationally to the new configuration of power to the corporate coup day to that was undertaken, what is called our system of use at alltarianism. it was an understanding that the formal organize in this manies of power carry out the piecemeal reform as they were designed to do. essentially we are trapped if a system of political paralysis. there is an inability on the
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part of government to respond rationally. that is a constant theme in the columns to the problems that beset us, whether that is climate change or the financial collapse, the mortgage crisis shall the chronic underemployment, unemployment, the fact that a million people a year go bankrupt because they can't pay their medical bills, 80% of whom had had health insurance. all of our legislation is written by corporate lobbyists. powerly understands perfectly well what is coming and is radically reconfiguring the legal system to criminalize dissent. obama's assault on civil liberties heb far worse than the assault carried out by george w bush, whether that is the use of the 2001 authorization to use military force act to justify the assassination of american citizens, the amendment act
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that retroactively makes legal what under our constitution has traditionally been illegal. the wiretapping and the eavesdropping of american citizens, our personal information is being stored in supercomputers in utah, the use of the espionage act six times to shut down whistleblowers. it was used three times until obama came to office shall the first time as a former investigative reporter, you cannot do anything to challenge the official government narrative. you can't even get ballgame briefings because people are frightened of going to jail and the national defense authorization act which obama signed too law on december 31, section 1021 perlts the u.s. pilot to seize u.s. citizens, strip them of do you process, hold them in military
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facilities indefinitely. i sued the president over this in federal court. i won in september and the obama administration appealed. what was facinating is to they went to judge katherine forest after she gave her technician if her 112-page opinion which is really a brilliant kind of dissection of the destruction of the separation of powers and is worth reading, asked for an emergency stay meaning they wanted the law put back into effect physical the appellate court would hear the case. some he refused. they demanded an emergency hearing with the appellate court at 9:00 a.m. if the morning the next monday for an emergency hearing and an emergency stay which they got. the only reason that i and the lawyers can make out is that the obama administration reacted so aggressively is because they're already using it, probably on pakistani u.s.
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dowel nationals. the inability to curb wall street, a close examination of the obama health care bill which was written by corporate lobbyists, in particular ms. fowler who has gone back into n. the inability to the industry. the inability to deal with the most important crisis that is confronting us, that is climate change, the fact that the obama percentages has not only approved the southern leg of the excel pipeline but certainly appears to being going to approve the northern leg. all of these are indications that essentially power has been rusted from the hadn't of the citizenry. there is to way within the american political system anymore to vote against the interests of corporations like exxonmobil or goldman sachs. and occupy understood this and they understood, number one, where power had been
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transferred to. that was from the legislative bodies and the judicial bodies and of course the press, let's not forget the press has been completely corporatized. you talked about banks, roughly a half dozen corporations, viacom, general electricity, rupert murdoch, disney, clear channel, control almost everything americans listen to or watch, crating this faux narrative, on the one hand it's court gossip from fox or msfbc. it's all the same junk, just spun differently. the real substantial issues that matter to the majority of american citizens are never mentioned. it reminds me of what dorothy parker once said about katharine hepburn's emotional range as an actress, it goes from a to b. step outside of that paradigm and you instantly become a pariah as anybody at m.i.t.
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knows noah alcohol ski's great work will tell you or ralph nader who has been fighting corporations and understands corporate power better than anyone in this country. occupy grasped that. they also grasped that the only mechanism we have left by which we can save ourselves is civil disobedience and they craigously carried out those acts of civil disobedience repeatedly. what was the response of the state? the response of the state was to move in and physically eradicate the encamp it's in a coordinated effort run by the obama understanding. this movement terrified the power elet and in particular the democratic party, this kind of faux liberalism that speaks in the traditional feel your pain language and has abandoned the very consequences ensi that they purport to represent. that is very dangerous. i covered the war in the former yugoslavia for the "new york
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times." i watched what political paralysis does. that is essentially what has happened. we have a system that is incapable of responding to the legitimate grievances and injustices to are being visited on tens of millions of americans. half of this country is leaving in poverty or a category called near poverty. what is the response of the corporate state? it is to cut unemployment benefits for hundreds of thousands of americans, which means tens of thousands of these people are going to lose their homes and they're all about to push us over the so-called fiscal cliff. corporations know only one word and that's more. and because all of the restraints, the regulations, and the impediment to corporate power have been lifted, they have as marx understood, commodified everything, you see 40% of the summer arctic sea ice melts and shell and exxon
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look at it as a business opportunity. it's insanity. we are now all aboard the ship, moby dick, the study of the american character and ahab is in charge. and as ahab said, "my means and my methods are sane. only my object is mad." the inability to stand up, whether it's over the inevitable financial dislocation, these people are harvesting the country. anytime hedge fund manages and let's never -- managers, and let's never forget at institutions like this, half of the trustee boards come from this class. most of them should be in jail. when they walk into inner city areas and talk about poor children's education, it's not because they want kids to read and write. it's because they know the federal government spend $600 billion a year on education and
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they want it and they're going to get it. there is no mechanism left except civil disobedience and having covered movements all arounded world, the revolutions in eastern europe, the two palestinian uprisings, the street demonstrations that brought down milosevic, you know the continueder is there. i spent the last two years in the poorest pockets of it country from camden, new jersey, to the pro douse fields in florida and the coal fields in southern west virginia, you know the continueder is there. you don't know what is going to set it off. it's usually something relatively benign. an elderly woman gets foreclosed if her home in utah or something. i know it's coming. will it look like occupy? will it be called occupy? you can never know. i think it's better to think of occupy not as a movement, but as a tactic. rosa parks refuses to move on
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the bus. it's five years until we see the freedom rides. and because the state has not responded rationally, because the state has proved paralyzed, because it not only cannot address the grievances but essentially allows corporations to extract more and more and more in this reconfiguration too a form of neithero feudlism, all i can tell you as a reporter is that something is coming. >> thanks, we'll move on to discussions. [applause] >> so thank you very much for your incredibly powerful statements. i think one of the questions that comes to me is with a exactly is occupy? it's been mentioned as a tactic, for example, it is a way of organizing videos to
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respond rationally -- videos to respond rationally what is happening. there is an agreement of the panelists of where the problems are, but less agreement on what occupy actually is and if it can become what it feeds to be in order to respond to the big problems. so, for example, do we need a big strong movement as phil was pointing to? can occupy become a big strong movement without losing sort of its essential character, what seemed to be push pore local, much more spontaneous. much more sort of democratic in ways that seems sometime to be fragmenting. these are perceptions of occupy, but can it become this without seizing to be occupy? or is occupy a tactic that anybody can use at any moment? would somebody like to --
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>> let me add quickly that there was a process within occupy, and they lost control, the particular moment was when the individual tents went up. at the had been able to keep alcohol and drugs out. once the tents went up, they came in, activists were staying up all night in de-escalation teams and we were also seeing the nypd dropping homeless people off to essentially overload the system. so by the end, at least within new york, i don't know what your experience in boston was that the park didn't workment consensus worked very well. when you have small groups, it worked very well at the beginning. it did not work well with 4,000 people especially with the capacity for a bloc. i went get too caught up in -- movements and i speak as someone who covered them.
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movements have a kind of mysterious life force of their own. it's always the ruling class that determines the configuration of rebellion or response. the inability of the ruling class or the ruling elite in the united states to respond rationally to the grievances that drove people into these parks means that something will spring up inevitably. >> i would like toty that it is probably eminently possible for occupy to deprow as part of a number of national and international kind of phone calls and virtual meetings and they went well bringing back knowledge and sharing power all went well at scale. i tend to think that the minute problem was that our focus became the day-to-day running of the camp and we saw b.p.d. driving people to the camp that
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became difficult to manage. there is a lot of mental health issues, a lot of other issues entailed by running a camp. i think separating the camp aspects from the movement aspects will certainly help in scaling the program. i think it's possible. >> i don't think civil disobedience is enough and i worked as a movement organizer for many years. i made $50 a woke and when i had had kid, i just couldn't live on $50 a week. i don't think you can build a molvet sustained over time as like student movements where you go out for a brief time, you take action and then it's over and you go look for a job,
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right? then it's over. i think we have to have are a much more sophisticated approach. i also think we node appear approach that my mother can get involved in. she is 82 years old and if a wheelchair but she voted for obama thinking that that was fighting the system. there has to be ways to get my mother involved. when i was a kid, people, my father was a pinster, a pinster active if the civil rights movement. what people don't see on the tv shows about the civil rights movement were the years of conversations every sunday with people in church to tell them they are people, they are children of god, that was the story line and god doesn't make children or junkie children and they are as good as anyone.
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it took years of that to build their confidence, to get item to the point of taking action. and it's not just something i don't think that happens spontaneously. it may in some cases, but i don't think we're going to build a really strong, really powerful, really broad movement just waiting for some spark. there is a lot of education that has to happen. i'm from biffle, my first was boycotting tasty cake, they make crumpets and little cupcakes and coca cola. that's because the other movement organizers found ways to involve 7-year-olds in the movement. that was boycotting tasty cake and coca cola. i think we have to have a lot of tactics, a lot of strategies
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in order to bring people together. we need to have some difficult conversations about race. a lot of institutions played in it, things are just more complicated than that. there are a lot of unions that lobbied and got stuff stuck if the bill for example. and obama if my opinion is a transition figure peeng that he embodies everything that has been said at it table, both in terms of corporate influence but absolutely huge numbers of people who voted for him, that pushed for things that he included as well. that's why he is a transition figure. i think, he is a reflection of kind of where we are as a country and where we are as a movement. >> what happens when you have a chicago teachers strike is obama turns his back on him? when you have the bailout of
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the auto industry, they crush the u.a.w. i think that obama like clinton is a figure who essentially serves corporate interests but speaks if the tradition language of liberalism. there is hardly a campaign promise from 2008 that barack obama hasn't broken including supporting unions and raising the minimum wage. i think that that goes back to the point that it's the engines of corporate power that drive the political process and the economic process. the personal narrative of barack obama is irrelevant. that's why there is such continuity, whether it is i am purely war, assault on civil liberties, failure to curb wall street from bush to obama. those who actually decide and we just went through a 2.5 billion electoral charade are not in the white house.
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in terms of build a movement, yes, you're right. all of those activities have to be done and they are being done. but they're being done on a push smaller scale. that was exactly what i saw in eastern europe. if you saw, for instance, in leipzig, week after week the candlelight vigils against the commonist dictatorship and suddenly 70,000 people showed up. this is what havel points out in his essay, the power of the powerless, living in truth. you're exactly right, those activities have to be carried out. working with the occupy movement after the destruction, there is a clear kind of despair. i think we have to% that we have to keep going, this is with a occupy sandy has done. because as half he will points out -- havel points out we are exposing a decayed, leipzig, corrupt system that no longer responded
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to the needs of the sit ri -- citizenry, that's why they're so frightened of the occupy movement itself. >> you have the last word and we'll open the mics. start thinking about your questions. >> i want to grow with phil about the importance of deepening the connection between the rage and response of occupy with existing institutional structures. so i don't think -- i mean, we don't live in a totalitarian world where the only thing anybody can do is take to the streets there are other forms of mobilization, of power, that are out there, whether it's in the labor movement or in shareholders organizations or -- anyway, there are other
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forms of opposition and one of the things that i think is very important, social movements, there is no science, i agree they have to come outside, change doesn't happen only by the internal political process, in fact, it almost never happened by that alone. there has to be points of pressure, but social movements don't succeed when they don't tell a union night narrative that lots of people can sign on and get onboard, it is clear, it's hopeful, it has some solutions and they don't succeed when they don't deepen their roots in communities who have the grievances that they're taking up. when you come if from outside -- and occupy wasn't just from outside. occupy did bring if some of the people who were absolutely on the front lines of those grievances. there are many, many other people who are suffering in the ways that you were describing that weren't brought on.
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unless you link out to those people and tell a story that brings those people onboard, you're not going to in the end have a successful social movement. i think occupy, as i said, it's very important because if the absence of something like occupy, you could feel like there was no hope and the fact that people responded is a sign of hope, but it has to deepen and it has to connect to communities that are hurting. in more systematic and more unified ways if it's going to succeed. >> i want to continue that a little bit and clarify what i think one of the main issues here is. you said that occupy challenged the poverty of creativity around governance and society in general. we are not -- i think and i speak for myself, but we if my tight circle of friend and
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perhaps occupy at large, when we demonize romney or obama, we're not talking about a person who haphazardly made his way into the presidential arena. we're talking about a system that is only controlled by certain types of people and only promotes certain types of people. the structure, the system itself is all corrupt, very fundamentally on many levels from top to bottom. when we talk about organizing a around a singular principal, i don't think the solution is necessarily to consolidate around existing labor movements. it is not necessarily to formulate a third party platform. the solution is to use these tools and use these bodies in order to consolidate power and to use that power to challenge the way in which decisions are made fundamentally.
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>> i would like to have time for questions from the audience. please go to one of the of mike's so it can be sure to hear you. i will alternate between mikes as long as we have people at them. >> do you think cooperation does not work in this country because people do not know what it means? non-cooperation, civil disobedience. >> and if not, why not?
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>> in this country. i believe it should work, that is the only way to help in this country, but it does not really work. >> it works, if you get the numbers. the important thing is about building numbers. and sustaining it. but it certainly works. worked in the labor movement. the problem is it destroyed all of the radical movements. i will have to disagree with you on labor. labor is a spent force in this country. look at the chicago teachers strike. that had to break with the traditional democratic established as embodied by rahm emanuel and barack obama and stepped outside those mechanisms of power to respond. labor is fighting a rearguard action. in order for the bailout to go through, uaw had to accept or
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dick -- except a decline in salaries for older workers from about $76 an hour to $50 and had to agree the new plans to hire workers at $14 an hour and had to agree that they would not strike. if it struck, all of the bailout money would have to be repaid. while the democratic establishment holds up the sagging auto industry, what is the unspoken -- against labor to protect the working class. >> i am a member of occupied boston. i work with that gentleman a good deal, making noise in the streets. the first comment is, a huge percentage of occupied is indeed minority. a great portion of our effectiveness is that we are not outsiders, we are on the side of
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the people in the streets, the locals. it is not outsiders coming in, it is the people themselves. we are helping each other. that is just a comment. my main concern is twofold. i have a virtual daughter, she is 27. she has all the bad aspects of a girl who lived her life wrong. her eldest daughter is 10. she is single, living on the barest minimum of section 8, etc. she does not have even one year or 10 years. she needs help now. i voted for obama. it allowed her to maintain her support she would have lost under romney. i main objective right now is that we spent all this time, we
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are great people, we are talking to ourselves. we are not the ones we need to talk to. we need to talk to the almost half of america who voted against their own best interest repeatedly. i was down in immokalee to talk to people to understand what was going on and talk to people who are republicans, who view the world differently, and to get them to look at their own best interests. and ask the question, what do they want their own world to be? my question is, how do we get to those people? >> i tend to think, as i said, there is a layer of low hanging fruit that is extremely appealing to people across all constituencies and across all parties.
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it sounded to me like you were saying how can people on the left reach out to people on the upper right. i just think we need to reach out to both sides and appealed to people on the very rational, reasonable set of points. and to show the series of financial bait and switch is as a business owner, the stimulus is a total joke. the stimulus package for small business has never made it to small businesses. that is one of a host of examples where it is not difficult to talk to people, to engage and educate them and remind them that the party dynamic is not positive for any of us. >> it looks like you are about to jump in. >> i was just going to say that my starting point is where people are.
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maybe that labor is a spent force. it may be that civil rights organizations are spent forces. maybe that community-based organizations are now reminded into anxious to just get up foundation grant or a government no income tax credit to build five units of housing, and that is not going to change the system. but that is where people are. and that is where i start. for the last four years, i have been working with the widest, most conservative part of the labor movement. i have been working with them to try to get young black and latino kids of color into the building trades so they can become the green work force of the future. the building trades, spent as they are, conservative as they are, operate 1200 job training centers in the construction trades and it is the second- largest drop -- job-training mechanism outside of the u.s.
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navy. and guess what? they are actually in a coalition with youth build, with many other organizations that train high-school dropouts, inner-city kids, working together for the last four years to say, how do we change? how do we improve? the national leadership of the building trades has gone across 350 cities in the u.s., trying to convince locals at the need to change and have a new vision about how to grow a labor movement. that is encouraging to me. we have to do that kind of work, reaching across, not writing people off. if it -- if anyone is justified in writing off people who try to keep people of color out of work, i think people like me would be justified in writing of those people. in order to change america, i
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need them. i want them to understand, they need me, too. i just think we need to proceed like that. we cannot proceed with somebody styria or somebody's wish for a spark to ignite folks to go on the street. i personally do not like riots. i saw what comes after riots. if you don't have a plan, if you have no capacity to run the city, you get shot, people go to jail. you win a victory that last for a little bit of time and then you lose in the end because the people who are fighting have more staying power and more capacity. i think this is a real fight, not one i want to lose. not one i want to see our committees lose. i think the stakes and the dangers are bigger than they ever were. >> i am going to ask us to not make comments but ask questions,
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and try to keep them short. we have little time and many people. >> given the technology have in the 21st century, and given the welt that i see that we spend on the entertainment industry, my understanding is that eradication of poverty is possible and that it is not some sort of fantasy like the eradication of crime. is the eradication of poverty in america a possibility, and what is the method for getting their, if we cannot depend on voting someone in the power to help us get there. >> poverty rates have been going up in this country for the last two decades, but they went down , so here is a place where i actually think government policies matter. and whether people put pressure
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on the government, whether through mass protest or through institutions like the labor movement's or through election campaigns, policies matter, as you said. we have enough wealth in this country that there is no reason why anybody in this country should be hungry. there's no reason why anybody in this country should be poor. it is an atrocity that so many children in the united states grow up in poverty. it is totally against the ideas that this country was founded on, that are powerful ideals that resonate with many people. what the occupy movement correctly is picking up on is, the government has not been responsive. it has been part of the problem. it has been creating policies that have made the situation for people worse, and we actually
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need better policies. we are not technically limited, we are politically limited. >> next question. >> in the interest of gender balance, i offered my spot to the young woman behind me, and she demurs, so here i am. i wish the entirety of this conversation or focused on the democratic party, whether it is and allied of our struggles and interest or not, and what, if anything, might be an alternative to that politically, not just in civil disobedience. i am sympathetic to civil disobedience and speaking truth to power and challenging power. ralph nader likes to " cicero, who said freedom is participation in power. with that in mind, can have a
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little bit of further elaboration on political alternatives, acknowledging the difficulties and the constraints, to the established institutional democratic party, or if you don't think that is the way to go, please say so little bit more explicitly. thank you. >> i supported ralph nader. i wrote most of his policy speeches for him in 2008. i voted for joe stein in this election because i believe the democratic party, beginning under clinton, essentially sold out for corporate money. clinton continue like obama in that -- to speak in that i feel your pain language, while he gave us nafta while he deregulated the fcc, he
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destroyed welfare and 70% of the recipients were children. from doing the business of corporations, he got corporate money. by the 1990's, the democratic party had fund-raising parity with the republicans. when obama ran in 2008, he got more. i look at other countries like germany. the labor party in germany never pulled more than 5%, but it is a counterweight, force to protect labor. the reason i supported ralph nader and voted green is not because i believe anyone is going to win, but ralph is right. we need to build five, 10, 15 million people who begin to put pressure on the democratic party from the other side. this policy of voting for the least worst, voting in elections were the primary emotion is fear
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of the other. it is fear that homosexual couples will teach your children in kindergarten, whatever wacky idea that have. romney was a corporate -- where did obamacare come from? it was first put in practice by romney in massachusetts and then it was adopted by the obama. it is a completely faux the date. it is part of resistance, but not enough. i actually agree with your. and the work you are doing, and when i talk about a sport, high and not sitting at home watching c-span awaiting for a spark. but i think that we cannot get
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demoralized with numbers, and after the success of the occupy movement, i am finding a demoralization. i came out of seminary, harvard divinity school, and resistance is kind of a moral imperative. that is what king got and what malcolm got. we were where we should be. fayed is the belief that the good -- >> the good to itself. -- faith is the belief that good draws the good to itself. i think that because we have this truth, we do have the capacity. i think it articulates the
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concerns of the mainstream and what frightened the state more than anything was seeing on the weekends, mothers and fathers from new jersey show up pushing their strollers up and down the street. >> i want to have one additional comment in response to that question and then it will be 6:00. those of you need to leave, please do so. i thought to finish up, what we could do is just take all the questions in sequence quickly and then have some good statement by the panelists to sum things up. >> to your very important question about how to relate to the existing political parties. i completely think there is room for third parties, for
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opposition, for voting your conscience. i do think there is some political reforms that we do a lot. one of them is campaign finance. we have been losing over and over again on the campaign finance issue. the way that money now influences elections is completely undemocratic. we need to get those laws changed, so that is one thing, if i were trying to think about how to respond to the political process. even if we have other parties in there, we need to change the rules of the game to make sure that everybody had the chance to influence the political process on an equal basis. and the second thing is i think we need to change the electoral college which is very biased against cities and places with big populations. >> those of you need to leave at 6:00, here is your moment. if we could make the questions
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short, it looks as though there are four more questioners. we could ask those questions and then go back to the panel. >> occupy it as very good georgia connotations. is it a good name -- buried pejorative connotations. >> i was wondering if you have advice for students in technological and technical fields, people who see the same situation you described, agree that there's a problem, and want to help. >> there is a really good book, "republic lost."
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it seems to me he is addressing recovery and from the influence of money in politics. how can we do that? seems to me, as he says, it should be the second item on everybody's agenda, no matter what your issue is. so what is your response? >> why are we, all of us, so parochial? a occupy sandy worked together with 350.org. you go to their pages, they do not have links to each other. nobody here has put occupy within the context of the wave of worldwide revolution that started with tunisia. those in spain are much closer
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to us than it tunisia or spain or egypt or any other place. >> you mentioned that you had been to west virginia and spoken to folks there and i have spent a lot of time in western kenya. what i see is poor white workers who shared -- in west virginia. they shared distrust in the finance industry and the government and lots of things like that. how can occupy appeal to these voters who are socially conservative but are traditionally democrat? >> medstar with phil and chris and then go this way. -- let's start with bill and chris. >> i just wanted to say, and with a lesson i learned from my grandfather. i grandfather raised me.
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my grandparents raised me, and he was from a farm in north carolina. in 1968, he voted for george wallace. even as the young person in 1968, i could not understand why he was voting for george wallace. i hope folks know who george wallace was. he was leading a segregationist movement. my grandfather said both nixon and hubert humphrey or corporate guys in suits, and they would just say whatever they think they need to say in order to get elected. but i've spent my whole life for white folks and they are lined up behind george wallace because they really believe in what george wallace has said. he said, but i think if i really talk to them and work with them, i can change them. if you change a poor white in
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the south, you've got a friend forever. i will never change these people in suits because they do not believe what they are saying themselves. that is how i think about this question of movement building. i don't care, democratic party. i have been left for 30 years. i don't see a big difference between whites on the left and whites on the right. i don't see it. it is really about, do you believe in what you say? are you open to real conversation, for real engagement, for real humanity, war are you not? i don't think any party or any left-right has any monopoly or particular high ground on that issue. that is the fundamental issue. when it comes to change and movement building. >> thank you so much. phil has to leave.
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let's thank him as he leaves. [applause] >> i just got back from alabama, where 34% of african-american men are disenfranchised because of criminal records. i was in montgomery. there is one confederate memorial after another. the sons of confederacy have put this gargantuan confederate flag outside the city. it reminds me of the breakdown in yugoslavia where in times of economic dislocation, the war between the states is no longer about slavery, it is about straight be the state's rights. we have huge sections of this country embodied like that nativist element, like the christian right, in mythical narrative's, whether it is creationism, or the fact that
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muslims are a satanic ritual -- religion. you cannot rationally argue with people who think the earth was created 6000 years ago and adam- and-eve used to ride on the backs of dinosaurs. the only thing you can do is reintegrate them into the economy. that is what frightens me. when you fall to that level of desperation, and this is exactly what tore apart yugoslavia with these ethnic, nationalist identities. there becomes an inability to communicate. a year ago we had several hundred white guys dressed in confederate uniforms margin to montgomery. half of that city is black. to carry out a re-enactment of the inauguration of jefferson davis. it cannot carry out a dialogue. that is what frightens me. we have powerful movements that celebrate the gun culture, the language of violence, that
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demonize the marginal and the week, whether it is african- americans, homosexuals, women, liberals. i see that breakdown occurring because of the economic disintegration, and having lived through it in places like yugoslavia, the rational argument just does not work. >> it is something i think about a great deal. i think there is great future hold for up occupied-like movements. i can probably other it as a pejorative term question as well by saying it will probably not be called occupy when there is a broader base, long-term initiative. i hope it is a way of talking and thinking that is considered the leveraged and long term.
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in that vein, i think we are very likely to see as their continue to be a regular practice of public outrage all of the world and that americans hone that practice and remember something we forgot up until occupy for a long time and a lot of our major cities. that showing up for one day and marching against iraq or iran war is not going to cut it, and that a longer term sacrifice, initiative, and participation in speaking to power is an absolutely essential american value, one that you develop along with your trade skill, your social skill and your other skills. as we begin to find individuals
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cultivating that dimension we will also see america join the struggles against corporatism and government malfeasance. >> i thought the point about the global nature of this is really important. there were occupy movements throughout the world in addition to the impetus of the revolution juror talking about that sparked a lot of this. one of the coeditors of the boston review what salah broda piece about how a lot of people are always late to the party -- once wrote a piece about how years after a civil rights and women's rights came to say we are all for liberty, but never participated. there is a critical importance
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for not being laid to the party. when you see opposition to grievances that are just, that you not stay on the sideline. and the opposition may not be exactly what you wanted, but the new entry into the dialogue, that is the importance of having a beginning, but i have to put on my academic hat for a second and say opposition is great and important, we need a start, we need help, but we also need analysis. we need economics for democracy. we need visions of how things could be done better. we don't actually know the answers to lots of questions about how to organize a just economy. the more we can develop programs, not from on high, but
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that enter into the conversation about here is what the possibilities are. here are different ways of doing this. here is the reason why we want to change these laws. here is what would happen. the more that we do that, the better. for those who are engaged in practices of studying and thinking about things, there is a lot of work to be done in addition to joining the party. >> thank you very much. let's thank our panel. [applause] there is a reception in the back, and all of you are warmly invited to participate. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2013]
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>> in a few moments, the chief executive officer of the eelgrass stall company talks about the role of capitalism. -- of the rothschild company. president obama nominates chuck hagel to be defense secretary and john brennan to head the cia. later, our 2005 interview with then senator chuck hagel. on washington journal tomorrow morning, we will focus on president obama buz the 33w.uncement for his nominate we will look at the nomination
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of center chuck hegel to be defense secretary. we'll talk about relations between the u.s. and afghanistan and afghan president karzai is a visit to washington this week. >> i think that collectivization of the minds of america's founding fathers is particularly dangerous, because as i say so often in the book, there were not a technical group. presenting them as such tends to dramatically oversimplify politics of the founding generation, the minute it comes to be used as a big barogram to
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hit people over the head with, in ways that are -- becomes a big battering ram. >> michael austin on what he calls the deep, historical flaws by conservative commentators. he shares his views with david fontana, sunday at 9:00 p.m. and midnight eastern on c-span2. >> next, a discussion on the role of capitalism with len rothschild. this is from the forum on world outlook. >> it is my pleasure to welcome the chief executive of e.l. rothschild to join me for our discussion about capitalism in
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the world in 2013. apart from being chief executive of e. l. rothschild, you are also co-chair of the henry jackson initiative. that is where we are going to start. first of all, why increasing capital? that implies there is a problem with exclusive capital in the first place. exxon want to first thank you for including eric schmidt tonight. -- >> i want to first thank you for including eric schmidt tonight. their combined ages younger than i am, thank you. barrett makes me feel more comfortable. -- erich makes me feel more comfortable. i appreciate that. then henry jackson initiative on
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inclusive capitalism is a transatlantic, private, bipartisan group that got concerned about the feeling that maybe most people -- that too many people were thinking that capitalism was collusive capitalism. those of us who were born in the 1950's or 1960's, and there are not many of us in this room tonight, we grew up believing that we could work hard, play by the rules, and anything was possible. it was called the american dream. george carlin recently said it is called the american dream because you have to be asleep to believe it. we actually think that it is very important to acknowledge
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that capitalism has been planned economies as the way to move people out of poverty and improve lives. 700 million people since 1980 have been lifted out of poverty, largely through one sort of capitalism or another. but at the same time, we have to admit that capitalism in the anglo-american sense has gone off the rails a bit. for us, exhibit a at that -- of that is the inequality rate. since the 1980's, when i graduated from law school and enter the work force, my dad worked two jobs and put four children through college and law school and said this is
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america, you can do whatever you want. i had that experience. since 1980, the top 1% have had an increase in their income of 275%. during the same time, the middle-class, the 60% in the middle, have had an increase of 40%, and the lowest of 18%. at the same time, in 1980, when i entered the work force, the average ceo was making 40 times the average worker. now the average ceo is making 380 times the average worker. i think the best metaphor i have seen for our problem, which i
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consider the inequality being one of the most important issues facing this country as well as britain, but larry katz at harvard has the right metaphor for what we are seeing. he talks about american capitalism as the apartment block that was the envy of the world 30 years ago. everyone wanted to copy what that was. today, that apartment block has really nice apartments, dated at the top. the middle apartments are crowded and damp. the lower apartments are under water, but the worst part is that the elevator is broken. it is fixing to the elevator that the henry jackson group is about. >> are you you essentially saying that the occupy movement
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was right in its broad focus on these issues, on the 1% and even 1% of 1%, where it the distribution is even more skewed? >> i think that fundamentally, we are the 99%, is correct. that is why we born to the initiative, because we are not politicians, but we are the private sector. we believe that there are things that companies and individuals can do, and that is what we can talk about, to increase the possibility for people to benefit, for more people to benefit from our capitalism. >> your co-chair is domenic barden. he has an interesting article about addressing the issue of youth unemployment, which is one
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of the things that has gone wrong, the young people do not have opportunities. is that part of the escalator, starting right at the bottom with young people getting on to the latter in the first place? >> what we decided to do was not to be a think tank and not to advise government, but to say, what are the things we can do? his article is very interesting. there are 3 million jobs today in america that cannot be filled because we don't have the skills for them. mackenzie interviewed companies and 40% of them said they have jobs to offer, but they cannot find skilled workers. they predict by 2020 around the world there will be 85 million high and medium level jobs that will not have people with the
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right skills. the point is, what should business do and what is business doing? business should be creating a princess ships -- apprentice ships. business opportunities for entry-level people, not as part of philanthropy, but because they know that in order to survive for the long term, they need to create opportunities. rolls-royce for instance. for 20 years that had the rolls- royce academy, where they pay people for their first two years to only be an apprentice. that are not going to school for two years and being paid. they go through all of the divisions of rolls-royce, and then they either make it or they don't, but right now, 40% of top management had gone through that apprenticeship program.
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rolls royce 20 years ago realized they needed to train people for the jobs they had to offer. british gas has done a similar kind of thing. but we have jobs in this country, but we have a skills gap. one of the things the initiative talks about and continues to showcase other companies that do work in this area is how to train people for the jobs that are available. >> it seems so obvious that you would train for the companies -- that companies would train a work force to have the skills that they actually need. why do you think it is not happening already? >> it is definitely not happening. we had a launch of the initiative here and some people in this room or there. larry summers get a perfect example of how we are not teaching for the skills that we
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need. are there any survey years in the audience? in the audience? one person was able to use the trigonometry that we all study in college. none of us had to study probabilities. and yet, every day, how probable is it that we are going to go over the fiscal cliff? how probable is it that the doubt is going to go there? for a long time in this country we have not been training for the jobs that are available. in fact you have another interesting article about what michael porter did, surveying where we stand in a comparative since in the world, and our
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education is below a lot of the rest of the world. >> so young people is one area of focus. what's -- a second area that you focus on is small businesses. why does that need to be a particular area of concern, and what can be done about it? >> we are highlighting what be companies can, should, and are doing for small and medium enterprises, because first of all, if you are thinking for the long term, you want to broaden your base of suppliers. we think business in its own interest should be helping small and medium enterprises. an example of this is ibm. ibm granted through its foundation in the first instance, gave at $10 million
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grant to create the supplier connection. they created an internet based place where companies smaller than $50 million of revenue could apply to supply different things, from pencils and paper to which its -- widgets in courtrooms, what ever is. ibm brought in about 20 companies that put their needs on to this website so that small and medium enterprises can expand their businesses. small and medium enterprises account for the largest percentage of job growth in our society, but it is our obligation to encourage them and help them thrive.
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we'll ask eric how he felt when facebook was a small company. >> the third area that you focus on its corporate governance and what part of the issue that has been much talk about is an excessive focus on short-term ism, that you think a long-term focus might arise and be more inclusive, help bring more benefits to society. >> in the way that we are saying corporations should invest for the long term by investing in education that is needed for its future, by reaching out to small
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and medium enterprises. we also need the activity of the investor base to say we are going to invest in companies that think this way, that have a sustainable real-world. on our task force we have jim leach, head of ontario teachers. they make it very clear that they measure a company by its long term commitments to the entire ecosystem of its business. the pension plan of holland does the same thing. the new have ceo's you are on board, like one from italy. it stopped giving quarterly
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earnings reports. he said if your interested in long-term growth, sustainability, and a company that takes care of all its stakeholders, by my shares. we think that in order to have corporations do the right thing, we need investors to do the right thing, and create a virtuous circle of inclusive capitalism. >> the overarching issue that we deal with in the report is the issue of ethics. if people in business and finance thought about what was right and wrong, i think we
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would have less resistance to a war form of capitalism today. one of the things about adam smith is, 17 years before he wrote the wealth of nations, he wrote the theory of moral sentiments. he was more a moral philosopher than an economist. it was not hard for him to believe we were good. he believed we were self interested, but he believed that free markets and freedom would lead to people doing the right thing because they cared about the reaction of their peers. they cared about common values and a common future. one of the things we have seen since the 1980's is, from greed is good to just incredible
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opulence beyond what anybody can really justify, that we have lost that sense. like our parents, they were the greatest generation and they sacrificed a lot for us. sometimes i feel like we are going to be the greediest generation. give peoplet opportunities to get on the elevator. >> how do you ensure this really happens, because all the way along the time you are describing, there have been people who preached in business as well. there has been a big rise of rhetoric about corporate responsibility. how are you translate what you have been describing into something that actually spreads
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on a national or even international scale? the 1% of the 1% are very strong indeed. >> they are very strong indeed. we are almost run to start a movement of individual ways we can do something to help somebody else get a leg up. i think our political system is largely to blame for what you are talking about. >> the collusion of big
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business, i don't care if you are republican and democrat, if you are not sick to death of people claiming that they want a smaller government, but taking everything from a carried interest to subsidies for their industries, into their pocket, and if they don't realize or acknowledge or face the fact that they are the biggest recipients, there was a cover story on new progressivism. we are not supposed to know who wrote it, but i know who wrote it. in that, she talked about the mortgage interest deduction, which is essentially an upper- middle-class tax break, has cost four times what we have spent on low-income housing. pitbull to take that mortgage deduction don't really think i
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am getting corporate welfare, but we really are. there was saying quote by british chancellor of the exchequer. he said to group of businessmen who were coming in and saying get off my back, we got to have less regulation. he said it you want government to get off your back, then take your hand out of its pocket. >> we are going over time, but i want to ask you one question. it is a good one that has been asked by someone at one of the tables. what is the role of women in the inclusive capitalism? thank you for asking that. it is not inclusive if you don't include half of the population. >> that is true.
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and again, age. when i went to moscow, where just about 50%. -- when i went to law school. women are 50% of college and university graduates, 50% of law school, 50% of medical school. about a third or a bit more of business school. we are half of the entry-level, half of mid-level, 35% of the federal reserve board, but we are 14% of corporate boards on the fortune 500. we are 3% of ceo's of fortune 500, 17% of congress. so they are obviously our most powerful women.
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i have a sort of not politically correct rule on this issue. i think women should stop whining and i think it is time that in my experience, women decide not to go often. there are obviously stereotypes against us. we can fight against it. women can make it to the top. there is nothing in our way except ourselves. i think if we look within
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ourselves and we are ready to make the sacrifices that anybody has to make in order to get to the top, we can do it. i recently was with the group that received all sorts of metals coming back from afghanistan. one person in the squadron was a woman. the person interviewing the soldier said how do you feel about having a woman as your commander? the soldier said, actually, it does not occur to us. we just think of her as a soldier. i think that we can push ahead and we can make it. >> as you know, in europe, this is a very live issue at the european level, moose to have quotas of women at the board room level. i take it from what you are saying you are against quotas of that sort.
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>> quotas are really an uncomfortable thing for americans. you europeans are more comfortable. we want equality of opportunity rather than quality of results. that being said, i was on a fortune 500 corporate board pretty early in my career because -- i know for sure that the ceo of that company decided that he wanted obama and and that is why he found me. how do we get hillary clinton.
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suddenly the standard for of women goes through the roof. that would be mitigated if there were a requirement that you had to have a woman. so how to get american boards to think more about women, i don't know. >> we must let people eat, so please join me in thanking lynn very much. >> more now on the world outlook. this is a little more than a half-hour. >> there you are, that is an introduction to our conversation on technology. please welcome eric schmidt, executive chairman of google.
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[applause] >> thank you very much. good to see you. >> first of all, i want to thank you very much for stepping in on such short notice. >> i plan on coming anyway. >> coming and speaking in public are 2 slightly different things, so thank you very much. we have a lot of questions for you from the floor as well. i want to ask you about how technology will change airlines in various different ways in 2013. what i thought we might do is start small and then passed out and go bigger. >> let's talk about google initiatives that might change lives. one is google glass so the idea of wearable computing. is that going to be available
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next year and beyond that? >> if you look at google glass, it's sort of glasses that they don't put it right in your eye. they put it right above. they can show a video. we have been experimenting what this could be used for. there are obvious uses in your daily lives. we never had a device that records or could record what you saw contemporaneously. think about it. >> so how will we use it? we don't know. not crashing into doors because we're looking at our glasses. >> >> hopefully there will be telemetry that will tell you you're about to trip. when you have the digital world that tells what the analog world is doing.
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people fixing eye tbhrasses and medical applications to more interesting ones involving performers who show the audience what they say in addition to when the audience sees at a performance. there are many, many creative things. you just saw at the new york fashion show where some of the models were wearing this. you looked at what -- one of the eye catching literally trends. another was the whole idea of driverless cars. >> the driver has been doing something else. >> so you know, it's a lexus 450 and there is a button. and you take your hands off the steer wheel and it goes along. it takes 20 minutes on average
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for the person to stop freaking out. we have been studying this extensively. there are cameras in the car. for the first 20 minutes, their faces are ashen and they're watching the car drive. the first 20 minutes, the car did it exactly right. the car in front of you lurches like this, you can see that the a.i. system is deciding whether it has an escape lane or it has to slam on the brakes. it can do it faster than you can. >> so the moment, just to be clear, they're experimental vehicles -- you move so slowly if new york anyway, that it wouldn't make much difference. >> it wouldn't make much difference in new york. the great thing in california, you're 65 miles an hour, you click it up and you're a sports car. we do a race, we have a private
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racecourse, we race priuses against each other. we have a driverless prius against a human prius and the driverless prius wins every time. just hour, you click to get a sense, releasing numbers of these, over the last few years -- >> a lot of them. >> five years time -- >> we really don't know. it's important for these things to be production, they have to have two fail modes. you don't want to have mechanical systems have single point of failure. the human in a car is a single point of failure. we don't want to replicate. we want duel ways of brake controls and dual ways of steering. those are in development. it's fun as a subject. if you know someone who has lost someone in a traffic accident in america, you understand why we're doing this. 30,000 people, we don't cover it in the news anymore, it's so common.
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that's a record low death rate given miles driven. we're doing better at 30,000, 10 times more than people killed on 9/11 every year. this is terrible. if we can make a significant dent on that, we should to that. >> i was talking about the internet going increasingly mobile this coming here as the year there will be more internet connected devices that are mobile rather than fixed. so this is all part of that trend in a way. this is things and devices that are on the move that are connected up. do you see that changing fundamentally how we use technology. >> many of us lived in a model where there was network platforms, standard p.c.'s and so forth that were pretty much controlled by a single architecture or vendor in the case of the p.c. model. what we're seeing now is an explosion in different kinds of
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devices. whether it's mobility and so forth and so on, we don't know exactly how it will play out. what we do know are the mobile devices are quickly surpassing any fixed use, any of the macs and p.c.'s are being left in the dust. the numbers with android which is now the number one platform in mobile computing is five times larger in his current sales than the iphone, always an interesting fact for people, more than 500 million in the base, it will be a billion next year. we're turning on 1.3 million of these phones or devices every day globally. so the scale of this in terms of reach and impact and we talk about it here, here in new york, you're lucky if the phone system works. it's an improvement in your life and new yorkers are pretty so kisted anyway. imagine this showing up in your
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developing village. it's really life changing. >> i want to ask you about video because what, we have a question here from somewhere anonymously, what makes a video go viral. i was wondering whether that was partly gangnam style. >> yes. psy is the record, his name is psy park, if you haven't to hav it's heard this, your children the greates ever. and last week, last week he surpassed justin bieber as the most popular sort of phenomenon on the net. the video answer is even more interesting. >> you have been caught gangnam styling, haven't you? >> let's just say he is a much better dancer than i will ever be. >> did you go viral? >> yes, unfortunately. [laughter] >> the scope and scale of video online is much larger than people appreciate. what is the content of the internet? it turns out it's video. what's the number one source of video online?
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netflix. interesting. if you would have asked me 10 years ago is there any scenario where people will use the internet as an equivalent of movies, i said you are kidding me. it's a terrible use of the internet. i can give you a long list of why i'm right. society has proven me i am wrong. netflix is one and youtube is number two. between the two, they occupy almost the half of the total bandwidth of the internet. you do something viral, quirky and fun. >> talking about new things, new ways that you're experimenting, you also have energy projects. again, we have an article in the world in 2013 about the extraordinary reduction in cost of solar power, for example,
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something similar to solar panels. >> there is a china law which is china sort of overproduces to the point of bankruptcy. that is why the panel is so low. it's close. >> do you see technology transforming our energy situation? >> although it's controversial, the fact of the matter is we should give credit to the people who invented these new forms of oil and natural gas drilling generally known as fracking, hydraulic fracking and so forth. those are resources that help us find pore of this stuff. we can have a discussion about recommendation and so forth. it's very controversial. that has materially changed the economic structure of energy in america. if you take a look at conservation and renewables which i think is ultimately the right answer, what you see now is the automation and instrumentation of passive systems, it changes everything. it goes under the term of smart
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building. roughlyly 40% of the carbon epetitions that are coming out of the u.s. are coming out of building. frankly, if you would stop heating all of the building in new york as high as you do and insulate them better, you would make a significant contribution. you think of passive insulation as the first thing. the adopt of renewables. the interesting thing about solar, it's not even as good as wind. wind is within one cent of a kilowatt equal to coal in the current structures and that's phenomenal. let it come down its curve. there are a lot of reasons to be optimistic that automation, energy use, instrumentiation of your use, so forth. anybody play with a nest thermostat. it's a thermostat that you sort of screw into your wall, it's allegedly possible for you to do this on your own. i think it's one of the great sort of christmas presents for people who are sensitive about these things. it learns what you want if temperature.
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it does it dynamically and it wi-fis out what it's up to. >> what is google's activity in the energy area? >> we have ultimately decided to fund a lot of this stuff rather than build it ourselves because we thought we were better off as a banker to it. i'll tell you that the level of innovation and energy is equal to the level of energy in the tech world that we normally celebrate here. >> how does this all this relate to search in your so-called business? what is the rational for this variety of projects that you get involved in? >> google wants to be at the center of the information revolution. we want to be in a decade and 20 years and 30 years. what we're trying to do is trying to be part of what will happen. we're not always perfect and we do make mistakes. one of the more interesting things is in kansas city we have wired up a small number of houses now and we're now beginning to seriously implement it across the city, one giga bit of ether net.
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you say, well, do i need one giga bit, the measured performance is 78 down and 720 up mega bits, think about how your world could change. at that point, there is no difference between your computer and the computer center that it talks to. they're literally in one room together. it allows all of the different immediate qua that we so carefully have husbanded into this group and this group and this group all go away. you can handle as many d.v.d.'s as you want, all damcally and all real-time on this format. if this technology works and the results are fantastic, if the business works, so far it looks like it will be a very profitable business, it may be possible for us and others to wire the new world at a giga bit. that's the next step change. roughly today, an example, your average performance is on the order of 100 times less than that. >> i want to come back to the
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search. when you look at these initiatives, do you try also to bring them back to how they can make money for google? >> we have the luxury of not worrying about that as much because we try not to worry about these things. it's a luxury. we have the luxury of time because our core revenue engine is so strong. our success in search continues and the way to think about search is to think that search is imperfect because it fwiffs you a lot of choices. we would like to be able to give you the one answer that is correct. if, again, this is all voluntary and this kind of stuff, the more information that you tell us about yourself, the more accurate the results will be. the next generation of search will be much more targeted at you. in fact, we may be able to get to the point where we suggest what you may be searching for. classic example, we're in a search position, search with a you're looking for. that will be our motto.
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here you are in a strange city, we know you are a history buff. as you walk along the streets of new york, we tell you the history of the street. it's very easy for us to figure that out. it's very easy for us to generate those searches. you can imagine that the union of the mobile platform, the cloud computing plt form, the information plt form, gives us unprecedented vision into what you both are thinking about and you might want to think about as suggestions and, again, if you should opt in to that. >> it's interesting the exam you take is walking about the cities. that's an zm on where you are mobile. it's no longer someone sitting at a computer and i want to know a. >> the future is mobile. we call it pobal first. here in new york city, you have the explosion of high-tech start-ups. each starts with a mobile app for an iphone and an android phone. literally, that's their first design. how is the user going to interact with my service? how are they going to
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experience it? >> one prediction to one can make with some confidence if the year ahead is that you will publish a book because -- >> that's right. >> you and google idea director jerry cohen are publishing a book called "the new digital age." can you give us an idea or preview onhat the book is going to cover? i presume some of the things you have been talking about. >> we sat down over the last 18 months, traveled around the world and talked to people about where they thought technology was going and more importantly, how society would adapt to it, and we came to the end of the book with a very optimistic view of this. a simple way of thinking about it, let's go back to the economist. it covers dictators, economic problems, corruption, technological innovation, health care issues and general sort of things. >> and google occasionally.
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>> last week. >> yes, we were on the cover and covered us as well. so let's go through each of those. how to you solve the back dictator problem? you empower the simpsons. unless the dictator is willing to some out down the internet and shoot everybody can they're getting desperate enough to do, it puts a real check and balance, even china which is certainly not an elected country, it's sensitive to public criticism if you look at the train accident, which is their version of twitter, disciplined the party chief who was in charge of building up the railways. this guy who was seen as a god is on his way to prison because of corruption. think about the terrible things that go on in the world to people who are at the with him of the police chief or minorities or the terrible status that women are treated in much of the developing world. people have cameras. you can now anone pusly report
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things. you can imagine a network where a bad thing is occurring. you can report it anoun pusly. you can have anonymous responders. you can build those kind of networks and they're in development now. the fact that everybody is connected has a large number of step functions and improvement there. think about health care. we were talking earlier in the video about 2050 about health care and people sort of snickered when the gentleman mentioned to it, the f.d.a. just approved the first pill that you can swallow that has a digital chip in it that wi-fis out what is going on in your stomach. all of us would like to know what is going on with our nutrition, here is a simple solution, will you take this pill? yeah, you will and you will because it's your health and ultimately it will in your best interests. we did a series of seminars on somely transdermal patches which are skin thin sort of surfaces that you put on your
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skin and they have among other things, they use the energy of your body to power a wi-fi connection which then monitors what's going on inside your body. so all of a sudden it wi-fis out to your phone. your phone says you're in big trouble, call the doctor. the doctor calls you back, what a sock. calls, says get to the hospital right now. there are so many examples where the digitizization and instrumentation of the world using the combination of the mobile devices and i bet everyone in this room has a mobile device and if i went to grab it from you, you would think i was stealing the most important thing that you have. i'm not going to do it. they act in ways that really make a lot of sense. if we take one of those areas that we mentioned, milwaukee, and the example you gave was in some of the less democracy parts of the world where
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democracy is in short supply and technology can provide a check and balance and a product for accountability, what about the mature democracies. we just had an election in this country. did that teach any lessons, were there any technology lessons to be drawn from this year's election? >> it's always hard to reason from one event. the winners get to write history and the losers sort of think about the next election. there is no connection that the obama campaign, because i was part of it, had a technology that helped elect the president. it was cloud computing, servers and targeted programs and get out the vote. to at the the way that say this is to governments are going to change, too. on the one hand, the governments deliver services and now we can measure them. if someone asked you give me money to donate rice to the following village. we can now check whether the rice actually got there, another check and balance on
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sort of the corruption nature of things. we can test the effectiveness of programs. to give you some of the more sort of worrisome examples, governments can know where people really are. they can tell what they are reporting to doing versus what they are really doing. there are the slippery slopes. i'll pick one if britain. in london, when you're walking the streets of london, you're on a camera. those cameras are protected by law. in the last five years, technology has emerged that allows face toe techs to be very accurate. a simple rule, we have a picture of you and 13 pictures of you on the internet. with 95% of confidence, we can identify you. >> you put them there on facebook or something similar. so the fact of the matter is that you can begin to link these system and the linking
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has a lot of implications for how this will play out. >> as we mentioned, google and others were on the cover of "the communist" this last week. -- economist this last week. yourself, facebook, apple, amazon, how to you see that battle playing out in the year ahead? >> in the past i have called this the gang of four. i'm not sure that's such a good analysis, but i think it's roughly correct. in our industry, we have never had four felt work escapable plt forms competing at this scale. we have always had one, i.b.m. and it's monopoly which spent 1 years in the antitrust division, i.b.m., microsoft went through the whole trial 1991 through 2000. now we have at les four. they're each run pi hopefully
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sharp people who% what they're doing and they'll competing and also cooperating. the reason this is relevant to you all is it's driving prices down at a rate that is phenomenal. so when you lock at an iphone 5 and android competitors and you realize what amount of computation you have and you got it for a subsidized price of $100 or $200, people say whatever, it is extraordinary. that competition which is brutal by the way is ultimately beneficial. take a look at amazon. amazon, very controversial, roughly 50% of all of the sort of online world and a larger and larger part of the general ecommerce, extraordinarily well run, extraordinarily deep in its understanding of how to suggest things for you and incredibly convenient. take a look at facebook. if you have a billion users that use you roughly every three minutes, you can make money from them.
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it's not complicated. these are free platforms that are going to try it. each operates under a different set of religious rules. the afallacy i would offer, let's look at apple and google for example. think of these as two countries. in the old high-tech way, one would dominate the other, the other one would disappear fairly quickly. it's much more likely that each country can has its own lnl and it's own incompatible view of the other is going to have to put up with the other and find ways to work together. in apple and google's case for example, we compete very, very hard on the mobile world but we also are search partners. >> and new countries appear and old countries that were there that aren't member of the gang of four -- >> i'm certainly not suggesting this is the only group. there are potential fifth candidates. twitter is one that has been suggested and even netflix which i mentioned and microsoft is absent if my calculation,
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although they certainly wish that they were. [laughter] >> we have some very good questions from the floor that relate to some of this. one question is how will the scrutiny offense the use of user data by companies such as google and facebook, affect their business strategies in 2013? >> so what happens with these, all of tees companies correct a lot of data. each of them has different rules. in the first place, their behave is largely going to be controlled by the european privacy laws. there is something called the your honor data trotectorate which is what you do with the big data analytics. a sane solution is going it to say that the data is owned by the person, not by the company or at least cannot be used without that person's permission.
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data has to be really aanon ymized. security is our job. our system has to be secure. if you trust our data to us, it can't be available to fib else physicals it's by court of law. privacy is something that is sort of up to us and you. you have to decide how much of this information you want to be saring with other people and we need to page sure that it remains private. >> another good question from the floor, do the current heads of ao.h., yahoo! and facebook leave google because they saw to rewards internally? >> in each case, they became, c.e.o.'s of important and powerful companies. that position has been occupied by larry and myself. so i think perhaps they wanted a career path that wasn't in front of them. each of them is fantastic and
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if you lock, each of them sort of trained at comboogle, fptly vong, hail make a good it showing. he had certainly will. >> i wanted to ask you about antitrust. you have some limitations on what you can say on that it. that to is clearly going to be one of the big challenges mountain year ahead for all of these companies, but for google in particular? >> yes, why don't you ask your question. >> how are you preparing, planning, responding to that challenge? >> it will is a couple compents about antitrust. the laws differ in europe and the u.s. the european process is a finding at the e.u. level. we have been for investigation for it almost two years by the commissioner there and his staff. during this period, they comment from everybody and we give them literally millions of documents. we are busy negotiating with
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them. we don't think we violated any european laws, but we're happy to have the conversation and we're sort of now waiting on with a they decide to do. we have been negotiating back and forth and they have announced that publicly. in the united states, the law is similar but different if the way it's applied. in our indication, the government to have the federal trade commission look at this and a similar investigation is underway. there were a series of hearings. i testified at the hearings and, again, i don't see the consumer arm under section 2 and we have asked the government to come back and give us the examples of things which are violations of law. we haven't seen that yet. we are also in negotiations with them. that's probably all i should say. what i would say is we talk to these people a lot. we're waiting on them at some level. the ideal scenario would be that we come to a mutual argument with both of these. >> thinking about that, you
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mentioned so many of these other initiatives that you were involved in. how do you decide where to focus, was to focus on when you are planning for 2013? you have such a huge range of things. >> you use the wrong word. you don't plan. you build a product, you build a system that innovates in 2013. infovation comes from everywhere. if you would asked us five years ago, would we be in the driverless car business? we would say it's an interesting research idea. it's taken this long to build the lasers and other algorithms. our decisions are based on how much progress we're making in each of these initiatives. we're lucky that people are constantly suggesting new ideas and new uses of this technology which is i think one of the great things about google and one of the great things about high-tech.
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it's fun to work in companies where people are constantly suggesting new approaches to the problem. >> here is a very nice question from the floor which sort of combines some of the smaller video things that you are involved in with a bigger picture that you have been talking about. it talks about translation as a very fast fwroge industry globally. given that translation is key to spreading democracy and capitalism, what role will machine translation play in giving the middle class, solving middle east problems? >> when we started this, we had a scientist who invented a new technique which is called statistical machine translation. here is how it works. if you take english and chinese, english and russian, tbhrish and arabic and you sort of put the paragraphs next to each other. one goes one way, one goes the
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other and the other stuff, you apply these algorithms, it can learn to translate text into any other text. i am not making this up. it is literally mainly. mathematically what it's doing, it looks for patterns, a pattern repeats and the translation is done. this translation does not use a dictionary. that's why it is so interesting. sometimes it's brute force. it doesn't have any understanding of what it is translating at all. the beauty of the statistics cal machine translation which is what we use is we can go from any language to any language, if a small amount of time, we'll end up with a situation 100 languages into another 100 languages for all of the content if the world. the question is how does this affect things in the middle east? it affects everything because a lot of conflicts in the world an especially wars have been created because of a lack of understanding. one of the comments would be, was that there is a large body
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of arabic language work that has never been translated into anything. almost none of that is online. all of a sudden if we can put all of that stuff online, sort of the notion of having a little bit of respect for each other is going to go a long way. >> another question coming up related. i'm from africa, what is google's contribution to enabling success to the internet by wi-fi? >> what we did, the african situation as usual is worse than fire else. as a society, as a global society, we got to sort of look at ourselves and think how have we allowed these terrible, terrible things to occur over several decade. what is the story of the internet in africa? >> it is the most expensive in africa which is the poorest part of the world. how can this be? in many cases, distance, satellites and a monopoly of
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providers. there is no really good excuse for this. what we haveton is we have built proxy catchingses we put in each of the countries to speed up the internet. we have been funding competitive carriers and in particular competitive fiber to that. the questioner asks with a do we know about internet with wi-fi. you have your phone and the 3 g connection, the connection that enables your phone to work is impossiblely expensive. it turns out that more than half of the mobile traffic is not on the cellular providers, 3 g or 4g. it's known as wi-fi, 80211 in the reuters that people use. it's easy to imagine free wi-fi with common connections where you can use your phone. voiceover i.p. allows you to speak over the phone on the wi-fi network and that competition will open up those markets, i think. >> we have just about come to
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the end of our team. i want to ask you one last question which inevitably came to mind when you were talking about the magical translation devices. will there be a magical journalism device that will make the communists -- >> what is interesting about technology is that we do a pretty good job of catching up to the basics. we don't do a very good job of genius, all right. if you take a look at google news, many of you use google news, it does a pretty good job of assembling the obvious stuff. it doesn't have a lot of insight. the role of journalists in my view is the role of insight. it will be a long time. here is an example. we had a project inside of google to write things. i suggested, by the way, you could have it write a paper and then you can have it add 7% and then another 7%.
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it would produce inify knitly long papers. it looked at the information and assembles it. it did a pretty good job of a bad author. if you read it and have a good author, you can see the difference. this is where we are. it may be that 50 years from now, the systems will be so powerful that they can replicate the kind of special insight that journalists and reporters and people who are practitioners have, but it will be a long time before that's the case. >> on that reassuring note, thank you. >> thank you very much. [applause] >> googles eric schmidt was at the economists news outlet forum in december. news out let's are saying that mr. schmidt and mr. richardson are in north korea to try to secure the release of an american. their --
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[captioning made possible by nba digital] >> in a few moments, president's obama nomination of senator chuck hagele to be defense second and john brennan to chair the c.i.a. a q and a with chuck hagele and then the state of the occupy movement. several live events scheduled for spanier tomorrow, the urban institute hosts a discussion analyzing the recent debate on the so-called fiscal cliff and what is next if the debate over government spending. that's at noon eastern. at 2:00 p.m. eastern, governor chris cristi's state of the state address from trenton. >> i enjoy the capitol hill coverage because i started there many at the indicates ago up in your coverage live of the house and stat and the certain
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committee hearings. they're uniform tiff to the public. i like the way that spanier involves, it presents itself of what is really happening. a little commentary, but not edited out, it's just what they want to present to the american people. >> bill chadfield watches spanier on comcast. spanier created by american cable companies if 1979 brought to you as a public service by your television provider. next president obama nominates former senator chuck hagele to be defense section and homeland security visor john brennan to lead the c.i.a. from the white house, this is half an hour. >> ladies and gentlemen, the president of the united states accompanied by secretary of defense, leon panetta, chuck hagel, mr. mike morel and mr.
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john brennan. >> as president and commander in chief, my most solemn obligation is the security of the american people. over the past four years, we have met that responsibility. by ending the war in iraq, a transition to afghanistan, and decimating the al qaeda core, and taking out osama bin laden. by disrupting terrorist plots, saving countless american lives. among an outstanding team i am especially grateful to leon panetta who has lead the cia and our military with incredible skill. >> leon, after nearly five decades of service, you have more than earned the right to return to civilian life.
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i have much more to say about leon's distinguished service in the days ahead. today i want to convey the eternal gratitude of the entire nation. thank you so much. i also want to thank michael who has earned the admiration of all of us who have worked with him across government and here in the white house. in moments of transition he has guided the cia with a steady hand as acting director not once but twice. he is a consummate professional. everybody who works with him across agencies consider some truly to be one of our most outstanding national security team members. on behalf of all of us, thank you for your continued service. as these leaders know, the work
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of protecting our nation is never done. we still have got much to do. ending the war in afghanistan and caring for those who have borne the battle. preparing for the full range of threats from the unconventional to the conventional including things like cyber security. within our military, a continuing to ensure our men and women can serve the country they love no matter who they love. to help meet the challenges of our times, i am proud to announce my choice for the two key members of national security team. chuck hagel for secretary of defense and john brennan for director of the central intelligence agency. chuck hagel is a leader our troops deserve. he is an american patriot. he enlisted in the army and volunteered for vietnam. as a young private and then a
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sergeant, he served with honor alongside his own brother. when chuck was hit by shrapnel, his brother saved him. when his brother was injured by a mine, he risked his life to to pull him to safety. had to this day, chuck bears the scarce and the shrapnel from battles he fought in our name. chuck hagel's leadership of our military would be historic. he would be the first person of enlisted rank to serve as secretary of defense, one of the few secretaries who have been wounded in war and the first vietnam veteran to lead the department. as i saw our visits to afghanistan and vietnam, our troops see a decorated combat veteran of character and strength. they see one of their own. he is a champion and our troops and military family. as a leader at the v.a., he
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fought to give our veterans the benefits they deserved. as head of the u.s.o. he devoted himself to caring for our troops. having studied under the gi bill himself, he helped lead the fight for the post-9/11 gfrpbl i. bill so our returning heroes can get their education, too. having co chaired my and a.i.g. board he knows that our armed forces collect and lives depend on good intelligence. chuck recognized that american leadership is indispensable if a dangerous world. i saw this in our travels across the middle east. he understands that america stands strongest. we stand with allies and friends. as a successful businessman, he also knows that even as we made tough fiscal choices, we have to do so wisely guided by our strategy and keeping our military the strongest fighting force this world has ever known. most importantly, he knows war
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is not a distraction. he understands that sending americans to fight and bleed in the dirt and mud, that's something we only do when it's absolutely necessary. my frame of reference, he has said, is geared toward the guy at the bottom who is doing the fighting and the dying. with chuck, our troops will always know just like sergeant hagel was there for his own brother, secretary hagel will be there for you. finally, he represents the bipartisan stance we need more of in washington. for his independence and consensus, he has earned the respect of military leaders, republicans and democrats, including me. in the senate, i came to admire his courage and his judgment and his willing it is to speak his mind, even if it wasn't popular, even if it deified the
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conventional wisdom. that is exactly the spirit i want on my national security team, a recognition that when it comes to the defense of our country, we are not democrats or republicans. we are americans. each of us has a responsibility , conduct has said, not to be guided by the interest of our party or our president even, but by the interest of our country. i thank you, chuck, and lillibeth to serve once more if the interests of our country. when i am on the subject patriots, let me say a few words about john brennan. john brennan, the men and women of the cia will have the leadership of our nation's most skilled and respected tenl professionals,not to mentions smart and strength which he claims comes from growing up in new jersey.
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a 25 year veteran of the cia he knows what our national second demands. intelligence that provides our policymakers with strong facts, analytic inconversation, the key understanding of the world. he traveled through the arabian peninsula where he camped with tribesmen in the desert. john has an invaluable perspective on the forces, the perspectives, the economics, the desire for human dignity driving so much of the changes in today's world. having held senior management, analytic and operational positions at the agency, john is committed to investing in the range of intelligence capabilities that we need, technical and human. he literally built and then led
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the national counterterrorism ster and he knows the risk that our intelligent professionals face every day. john has lost colleagues and friends. four the last four years of counterterrorism, he has developed and has overseen our counterterrorism strategy, a collaborative effort across the government. think about the results. more al qaeda leaders and demanders have been removed from the battlefield since any time since 9/11. their communications for recruiting financing were all under enormous strength. all of which makes it harder to plan and carry out large-scale attacks against our homeland. our entire team including our exceptional tractor of national intelligence, jim clapper, will remain relentless against al
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qaeda and its affiliates. in all this work john has been tireless. people here in the white house work hard. john is legendary even in the white house for working hard. he is one of the hardest working public servants i have ever seen. i am not sure he has left in four years. when i was at martha's vineyard, john came and did the press briefing. he was in a false and tie in -- it was summer in august, a full sue and tie. one of the reporters asked him don't you ever get any downtime? he said i do not do downtime. he's not even smiling. [laughter]
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there is another reason why i value him so much, and his integrity and commitment to the values that define us as americans. he has worked to imbed our effort in a strong legal framework. he understands we are a nation of laws. in moments of debate and decision, he asks the tough questions and he insists on high and rigorous standards. time and again he is spoken to the american people about our counterterrorism policies because he recognizes we have a responsibility to be as open and transparent as possible. john, you have been one of pi closest vitors. you have been a great friend. i'm deeply grateful for your extraordinary service. i am more grateful for kathy's willingness to put up with you.
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i am grateful to both of you for your willingness to take this assignment. today i can say to the men and women of the cia, in john brennan you have a leader he will fight for you every single day. you will have a leader that has my complete confidence and trust. the work of defending our nation is never done. my number one criteria in making these decisions was simple. who is going to do the best job in securing america? these two leader have dedicated their lives to protecting our country. i am confident they will do an outstanding job. i urge the senate to confirm them as soon as possible so we can keep our nation secure and the american people safe. chuck and john, congratulations. with that i want to invite each of these leaders on stage to say a few words starting with mr. leon panetta.
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>> first of all, let me express my deepest gratitude to the president for giving me the honor and the privilege of serving in your administration. the last four years as director of the cia and now secretary of defense i have been extremely proud to be part of your national security team and to be proud of what it has accomplished in your first term. looking ahead to the second term i want to commend president obama on his decision to nominate chuck hagel as the next secretary of defense. let me also add as former director of the cia to commend the president for his choice of john brennan. i had the opportunity to work with john on counter-terrorism issues these last four years.
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he knows the cia. he will be a strong leader of that great intelligence agency. i also known chuck for a long period of time as well. i had the opportunity to work with him closely, particularly in his capacity as chairman of the president's intelligence advisory board. i greatly appreciate the work he has done to strengthen our intelligent enterprise. it has been extremely important to our ability to improve our intelligence capabilities. as secretary of defense, i also benefited from his work when he served on our defense policy board. chuck hagel is a patriot. he is a decorated combat veteran. he is a dedicated public servant. i believe his experience, his judgment, his deep understanding of the security issues facing this country make him the right choice to be secretary of defense.
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as for me, after close to 50 years of serving the american people, began in 1964 when i served as first lieutenant in the united states army. then in both the legislative and executive branch positions in washington. the time has come for me to return to my wife sylvia, my three sons, their families, our six grandchildren, and my walnut farm dealing with a different set of nuts. [laughter] i want to deeply thank my family for giving me the fullest possess of love and support during my many absences from home throughout my long career in public service.
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i will leave washington with a deep sense of pride in what we have accomplished during these last four years being on the president's national security team. as both director of the cia and the secretary of defense, i've always believed our fundamental measure is to keep america safe, to keep america secure. because of the outstanding dedication of our intelligence and military professionals america is safer and more secure than it was four years ago. we have reached a turning point after more than one decade of war. as we reach that turning point, we developed a new strategy for the 21st century. we have decimated al qaeda's leadership and weakened their effort to attack this country. being we have brought wars in iraq to
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an honorable conclusion. we have opened up opportunities for all americans to serve in our military. we continue to support our forces, their families, and our wounded warriors. these are some of the achievements that i am proud of. let me close by expressing my profound gratitude to the outstanding team of military and civilian staff and leaders that i had the honor to serve with at the department of defense and at the white house. in particular, let me deeply thank the outstanding men and women in uniform who have had the privilege to serve and to lead. those who put their lives on the line every day on distant battlefields for this country. their sacrifices teach us that freedom is not free. a strong democracy depends on a strong defense.
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you cannot have a strong and stable defense without a strong and stable democracy. as we continue to confront strategic challenges and fiscal austerity, my hope for the future is that the sense of duty our service members and their families exhibit every day inspires the leaders of this nation to have the courage to do what is right, to achieve the american dream, give our children a better life, and to build a more secure future. >> thank you. i am honored by your trust and kfs if me and not unmindful of the immense responsibilities that go with.
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i want to acknowledge my family who are in chicago today. he is attending his first day of class is at depaul university. and to my friend leon panetta. thank you for your service to our country over so many years and in so many capacities. you are one of the premier public servants of our time. to follow you at the department of defense will be a most challenging task. i will try to live up to the standards that you, bob gates, and others have set for this job and this nation. let me also express my deep appreciation and congratulations to my friend john brennan. and to acknowledge the president's confidence and trust in john brennan. thank you, john, for your
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service to our continue. to mike would i have gotten to know over the years, not just serving on the stat intelligence committee, but also as the president has noted, the privilege of co-chairing the president's intelligence advisory board with former senator dave warren, thank you, mike are for your continued service. mr. president, i'm grateful for this opportunity to serve our country again, especially its men and women in uniform and their families. these are people who give so much to this nation every day with such dignity and selflessness. this is particularly important as we complete our mission and support our troops to a -- and military families who have success ri fairwaysed so much over a decade of war. i am fwrateful foren opportunity to strengthen our country and strengthen our country's alliances and advance
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global freedom, decency and humanity as we help to build a better world for all mankind. i will always do my best for our country and those i represent at the pentagon and for all of our citizens. mr. president, i will always give you my honest and most informed counsel. thank you very much. >> mr. president, thank you for your very kind remarks and thank you for the trust that you placed if me when you asked me to be acting director twice. i have the honor of knowing and working with john brennan for the last 20 years. we have worked particularly closely the last three years. john brennan is an intelligence professional with deep experience in our business.
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a public servant with extraordinary dedication and a man of deep integrity. with senate confirmation i know he will be an outstanding director of the central intelligence agency. as the president noted, john started his career at c.i.a. and spent nearly a quarter century. so this is a homecoming for john. john, on behalf of the talented and dedicated men and women of c.i.a., it is my team honor to say welcome home. >> mr. president, it is a tremendous honor to be nominated to be the director of the central intelligence agency. the women and men of the cia are among the most dedicated, courageous, selfless, and hard
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working individuals who have ever served this country. at great personal risk and sacrifice they have made countless and valuable contributions to our national security and to the safety and security of all americans. most times, the successes will never be phone outside the hallowed halls of langley and the oval office. leading the agency in which i served for 25 years would be the greatest privilege as well as the greatest responsibility of my professional life. mr. president, i want to thank you for your confidence in me, but even more, for your confidence and constant support to the c.i.a. and to those who serve in the intelligence community. they need and deserve the support of all of their fellow americans, especially at a time of such tremendous national security challenges. if confirmed as director, i
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will make it my petition to make sure the c.i.a. has the fools it needs to keep our nation safe and work reflects the bishts, freedoms, and values we hold so dear. i am proud to stand here today with such patriots as a leon panetta, chuck hagel, and michael morell. i have much look forward to the opportunity and privilege to serve with another of america's great patriots, conduct hagel. i am especially proud and has to be able to stand here today with a close friend and colleague michael morell which epitomizes what it is to be a intelligence professional. michael's leadership at the c.i.a. as well as his 32 year career has been nothing short of exemplary. i very much look forward to working with you in weeks and years ahead. i also look forward to working
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with congress. our national security rests on the ability of the legislative and executive branches of our boston to work as a team. while the profession often times demand secrecy, it is critically important that there be a full and open discourse on intelligence matters with the appropriate elected representatives of the american. i look forward to working closely with those on both sides of the aisle. finally, to my wife cathy, to my children, to my parents in new jersey, a shout out, owen, who is 92 and my mom, who is 91. i could not be it where i am today without their love and patience and understanding, and there is no way i could repaid that.
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mr. president, i am deeply grateful for this opportunity. it will be bittersweet to leave all my friends here at the white house and the staff i have come to work with and respect so deeply over the last few years. if confirmed by the senate, i would consider it to be the honor of my life to serve. >> these are outstanding individuals. we are grateful to all of them. i want in particular to thank mike and leon panetta for their extraordinary service, and i want to repeat, i hope the senate will act on these confirmations promptly. we do not like to leave a lot of gaps anytime one set of leaders
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transitions out and another transitions in. a final point i will make, one of the reasons i am so confident chuck hagel is going to be an excellent chief of defense is they understand we are only successful with the folks on the ground who are often putting their lives at risk for us and are often at a grade removed from washington and its politics. to have those who have been in the field, in the field of battle to understand the decisions we make the impact
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everybody who has to impact our strategy. it will provide me the kinds of insights i need to, but it also means these folks are going to be looking out for the people who work for them, and that is something these leadership positions is critical. i am looking forward to working with these individuals. thank you very much. >> judge panel will be the first vietnam war veteran to headline the defense department. he joined us for a q&a interview in 2005. this is a little leadership capability in you? >> well, i suppose like >> do you remember the time you thought you might have a leadership capability in new? >> we did not dwell on such things. i always thought having people around you and in parts of the team and the system was a big
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deal. i suspect the first realization of that came when i played on little league baseball teams. you saw leadership developed on those teams. i never thought too much about myself being a leader. i just did what i thought was right. i said what i wanted to say. it all followed. i think that is what life is about. it takes you interaction sometimes you do not anticipate. >> is president of his class in high school for three years. and notice you are president of the student council.
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>> i was. i enjoyed that job. it was part of something bigger than your own self interests. i have always enjoyed bringing a consensus in purpose together. i've always been stimulated by that, focusing on projects in big issues. trying to do things freer school or community. that is a big deal. it is part of who we are as individuals. to have the trust of others, whether it is a still predicted
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the council president is something i take seriously. it encouraged me and inspires me. >> what was it like growing up in your household? and a brother who was in law school. my other brothers three years younger. is a commercial artist and has his own firm. they're both doing very well in their lives. our youngest brother was a year young bears and me. he was killed in a car accident. he was 16 years old. when i was 16 my father died on christmas day. my mother was left with four very spirited voice she had raised. aside from the back of that she raised one politician and one lawyer she did pretty well. my father was important. after a while it is your mother
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who took over and raised the kids the market couple of jobs. did the things that many mothers do today. i have a real understanding for mothers of have to deal with that. i agree respect for single parents. >> you would have been 24 when he was 16. what impact did it have on new? >> it was difficult. the year he was killed my mother remarried. they have moved to a new community where they could start over. a brother tom and i had just finished combat tours in vietnam together. we came back ok. my mother felt pretty good about things.
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about four months after she was remarried my brother was killed. it was tough for my mother. my brother was in second grade when my father died. they were really inseparable. i coached him in little league, baseball. i coached him in little league football. i was kind of a surrogate father. any time a family loses a one of their siblings, one of their immediate family, it is tough. >> i want to play an audio tape for you. i read this particular conversation had an impact. >> what do you think of this vietnam thing? i would like to hear you talk a little bit.
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>> i would respectfully decline. i do not like to brag. don't see how we will ever get out without fighting a major war with the chinese. i do not see it. i just don't know what to do. >> richard russell and l.b.j. in 1964. do you remember when you read this exchange? >> i don't remember the exact year. i recall over the last couple of years, i listened on public
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radio to most of those tapes and renewed my understanding and appreciation of what was said on those tapes. >> and what's the significance for you? >> well, the significance for me is how easily a nation can be drawn into a war with major consequences for that country when none of its leaders or essentially none questioned that process that took us into vietnam, the policy that kept us in vietnam and probably worse, the excuses as to why we were not winning. and i think the fundamental responsibility of any elected official is to probe, is to
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question. and certainly, one of the greatest responsibilities of congress, not just constitutionally is oversight. what is our policy, why is this our policy, where is it leading our country, what are the consequences of this policy. those questions weren't asked while we were in vietnam except by a couple. we just let this thing drift for years and subsequently 58,000 americans died and it's taken a generation to build back out of that. so that's the lesson, we all in these positions of trust and responsibility must ask the tough questions. >> you went into the army what year? >> i went into the army in april of 1967. >> enlisted?
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>> i volunteered for the draft and went in as an enlisted man. >> how about your brother tom? >> he volunteered for the draft and went in 30 days after i did as an enlisted man. >> we went through basic training together and advanced infantry training together and we ended up in vietnam together which we both volunteered to go to vietnam. >> why did they threat two of you go to the same place? >> i had orders to go to germany. and at the time i went through training i was given orders to go to white sands missile range for a three month then top secret course on then a very top secret weapon. it was the first shoulder fired heat seeking missile called the red eye missile gun. there was produced to ring down low flying soviet aircraft in
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europe. and it was the first of the most sophisticated shoulder fired missiles. and i went out to white sands and took that course for three months and then along with the other guys in my unit, there were ten of us. we were ordered into germany and would be integrated into nato units there. and we were getting ready to board the bus and i took my orders down and said i'm going to germany but i want to volunteer to go to vietnam. my brother was going to germany as well as a cook and he volunteered to go to vietnam and the reason they let us both go is because we gave up our rights which at the stipulated that no two members of the same immediate family would have to serve in a combat zone at the same time. since we both volunteered to go that took care of that stipulation.
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>> why did you want to go? >> i thought if america was at war at the time, it needed its best people. i thought if i was going to be in the military and spend a couple of years serving this country then i should go where there was a war, not war games and i felt it was the right thing to do. my father had been in world war ii and served in the army air force overseas. in fact i'm in the process now of reading many of his letters he wrote back to his sister and his parents. remarkable letters. and we had a tradition of american legion vfw growing up in little towns in nebraska and you served and there was an expectation to serve and you served where your country needed you most. my grandfather had not been
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overseas but he had in uniform in world war i. i thought it was the right thing to do f. america said it was the right thing to do, it was the right thing to do. >> how close did you come to dying? >> i don't think i came close to dying. my brother and i were wounded twice together. and my brother was wounded a third time. not lasting. i still have shrapnel in my chest and my face was burned and my eardrums were blown out but none really life threatening. my brother tom's wounds were about the same. >> what's the story of the two of you when you were together and wounded at the same time? >> the first time we were wounded we were on a patrol in the middle of the jungle and we
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used to walk point most of the time. one of us would carry the come pass and we felt better the two of us walking point. and he was very good. we were rotated back to the next squad after we had been breaking the jungle for about six hours. and about a half hour later point squad taking us across the stream, guys hit traps in the stream. once these trip wires hit the full blast of those big chinese mines hit and killed some of the guys in the front where tom and i had been a half hour before, hit both tom and i with a lot of shrapnel and we had to medivac the dead out and the seriously wounded because you couldn't move and the vc opened up on us once we had been pinned
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down. so it took us all day to get out and tom and i walked our guys out at night. the second time we were surrounding a village about midnight where the vc had been and my armored personnel carrier it was first and we were the last ones going out after we had secured the village and we ran over a 500 pound bomb which destroyed the armored personnel carrier and i was burned and both eardrums blown out and shrapnel and my brother was knocked unconscious. and his eardrums were both blown out and i was on the track throwing some guys off, some were dead and some were wounded and the concussion was so powerful it just vaporized so much.
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so we got everybody off t track blew up. the vc opened up on us. our guys came back to get us so we were medivaced out that night out of that area after we got the dead out and the ones who were wounded more severely than the two of us. and then they took us to a field hospital for three days where they patched us up and we went back out in the field. >> you were how old then? >> 21 and tom was 19. >> if you ran for president, if you became president, what impact do you think that experience would have on the future of how you would look at the material? >> we are all products of our experience, of our environment where we come from. i have been tempered by that experience about war. what war means, the consequences, who has to fight it. all of that experience is part of me and how i look at policy,
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how i look at our foreign policy, how i look at our military policy, how i judge consequences, how the world sees us, their trust in our purpose, in our power. no question that much of the questioning i've done about iraq even before we went in was conditioned tempered by that experience in vietnam. and whatever i will do in my life, whether it's in politics or outside, those experiences shape me just like anyone who has gone through war, those experiences shape you very much. one of the things it does is it makes you less inclined i suspect to jump into war. it's easy to get into war, not very easy to get out as evidenced by the johnson tapes. and you need to think through these things. diplomacy is critically important especially in the
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world we live in today. i think something else is important here and certainly it's a lesson we learned from vietnam. what is going to be very important for america and our future is not to unintentionally isolate ourselves in the world. we did that in vietnam. we've done that to some extent in iraq. we need friends and allies and institutions and structures after we formed after world war ii to deal with common challenges. if we're going to win against terrorism is going to take networks of sharing and gathering. so yes that experience of vietnam has shaped me and will cont to shape me. >> what would it be like if you and john mccain ran for president at the same time? >> john mccain is a very close friend of mine. there is no one i admire more than john mccain. we think alike on many things.
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we are different too. we disagree on issues. but how all of this plays out over the next two years, i don't know. but regardless of how it plays out, we will always be a good friend and i will always be a great admirer of him and i am grateful for his service to our country. >> if he runs will that impede you from running? >> i think in this business any decision one makes in life, that decision has to come from you first. it's got to come from you t considerations are your family, are other personal issues. then you start working through the more external conditions. you know in this business that
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if you run for president, there will be many very qualified candidates out there. some will be good friends i suspect. you know that and you factor that in. and you're not unmindful of that kind of competition. and that kind of competition is good for the country, it's good for our system. we want the best people in this business. so whatever decision john makes would not influence my decision. >> you guys ever talk about this? >> no. he's not there yet. i'm not there yet. he said that he'll make a decision after the election next year, as i have. there is no question he and i are both mindful of his interest. and i've encouraged him. i have said i think he needs to be out there looking seriously at offering himself for the presidency in 2008. he has built a strong base of
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support. i think he's the most influential senator in the united states senate today. he needs to offer his ideas and leader ship and that's good for this country as the democrats need to do. >> before you went into the service you went off to an institute in minnesota to study broadcast, brown institute or something like that? >> yes. >> what were you doing? >> i was trying to get my life back together. i was trying to find a new center of gravity for chuck hagel. i had been to three colleges and not done well at any of them. i had a football scholarship and i got hurt when i was a freshman and was never able to rebound from that. i was having a great time but i'm not sure i was enhancing the institutions where i was
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enrolled nor was i enhancing myself and i got to a point where i had a little talk with myself and i said chuck, you better get straightened out. you're not going anywhere and you need to figure some things out. and i had heard about this place from a couple of friend and i had always had an interest in radio and television. so i thought this might be something that could get me refocused and put some discipline back in my life and get me back where i need to be with a purpose in my life. and so i took my old 1957 car and drove it up to minneapolis early january right after new year's and spent a year in 1966 in minneapolis and graduated. i loved it, thought it was a great business, radio. and started to get into that business and worked for a radio station before i went into the army. then when i came back to get my
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college degree which i did, got back into the radio business. >> and it was in that job -- if i understand correctly, that you were able to talk to the congressman, john mcallister. how did that happen? >> i met congressman john mcallister, who had been an elected in 1970. he went on to win a very tight race in 1970 against the number one rated television anchor on the market, and john mcallister had been at douglas county commission in omaha, and i got acquainted a little bit through
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interviews and some of the talk shows i had, and i decided i was getting ready to graduate the university of nebraska that i was interested in coming to washington. i had never been to washington. i had always been fascinated with politics, so i went to the department store. i had a credit card, and i bought two suits, i bought two suits that look like senators you see on tv. the blue suit look like what i had seen baker where. i bought those on credit and went to washington. just last week i talked to the
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former congressman jim broil. i talked to anybody who would listen to me and who would take my resume. i would go door-to-door to republicans and leave my resume and say congressman mcallister said he would help me. at the end of the week there was shocked no one offered me a job. i went back to omaha and went back to my full-time radio job, and about three weeks later i got a call saying, i will make you a deal. i have got these new questionnaires i sent out. i will give you a job, $200. did you do some stuff around the office. i will let you lived at my
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house. we had a big house, $200 a month. i did not think that was attractive. i had a grander vision for my future. they said, you can always come back here. you can always go into radio. i loaded of the chevy impala, went to washington. with a little chair and table, i'd written questionnaires. >> how long did you do that? -- i grated -- graded questionnaires. then i went to be his campaign
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coordinator in 1972. after that, he gave his assistants. >> how long did you do that? >> i did that until i ran for the senate in 1976. i worked for congressman mcallister from 1970 and really learn probably as much from his style and philosophy of government, how to do it right with class and ability and integrity. that was a tough time if you will recall -- watergate and vietnam. those were tough years for conservative republicans, but it was congressman mcalester who framed government and gave me the foundation i still used today. >> how is it when you became a
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republican and conservative he became a democrat? >> if it went the other way round he would probably be a conservative republican. he and i are very close. our political philosophy in many ways is close as well. if you give me and tom the underdog, we will take the underdog always. we will always challenge power. i may do it differently from how he does it, but basic beliefs in our country and system, we do not disagree. how we come at it, we may disagree. he became a democrat. i became a republican. i suspect -- he and i both came
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back from vietnam -- attitudes may have influenced that. he was very opposed to the war when he came back. i was supporting vietnam, and that probably put us on diverging paths. >> do you agree today? >> i do. >> is there anything that could be said that would have changed your mind? >> not necessarily, but understanding how it was aligned at the beginning, the misrepresentation of the american people, the folly of how we conducted the war, not listening to some of the people we should have, not the intent, the nobility and what we tried to accomplish i still feel
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strongly about. the conduct of the war was wrong. the lying and the seed was wrong, -- and the seat -- deceit was wrong. >> how do you differ on iraq? >> i would rather direct my concern to why we went in, going in, not preparing, not thinking through consequences. i think we both agreed from the beginning. i think we are pretty close. i voted for the congressional revolution. -- resolution that gave the president the authority to use
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force. i also made a speech a couple hours before on the floor, and i defined why i was voting. my brother tom would have voted against that. we are pretty close on most of these things. congress agreed on this and some ideas about how we changed our policy to get us out of iraq. we cannot even just leave iraq and allow it to become like 1975 when the last of our influence went out on a helicopter from
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saigon. we cannot do that. we have to work our way out of this in a way that does not further destabilize. we have to do everything we can to enhance security and give opportunities to govern themselves. the people of iraq decide their future. tom and i have had a lot of talks about this. >> he gave money to the families of the victims of 9-11. here is a little bit of the interview. >> i am disappointed.
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i was not exactly the person everyone would assume would be a sign this passed. chuck hegel, whom i have known for over 20 years, pushed the white house and the department of justice to do this. >> explain this to outsiders. here is a guy who is a democrat, and he sat here and talked about you at great lengths and supporting your last candidacy. >> he was a big supporter in every way and was very generous in helping me and supported my political action. >> people are talking about getting you together, and we have a republican and democrat. how does that work?
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>> we have a higher purpose we were both focused on. the agent orange stuff was the largest out of court settlement. did judge wines been called me one day and asked if i would come to new york to visit. >> where were you then? >> i just left the va. judge wednesday laid it out, and he said, we will have $210 billion, and we do not know what to do with it. we can put together a board, make something out of this, define what it is, and you would be working very closely, so i
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agreed to do it and set it up. i had no financial stake. i had expenses paid and travel but no stipend or consulting fees, which i did not want, and we became very close, but there was a purpose to this. how would we take the money and give it back to the people who needed it most? that is the essence of the process and who we are as americans. we should strive if there is a consensus. sure, there are differences. there should be, and that is healthy. it presents to the american people options. you pick where you said, but that should never exclude doing
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for our people and our country what needs to be done and doing not only the right but enhancing our country. i happen to be very fond of him, and we have developed a strong relationship. i just saw john ashcroft the other day, and can always brings ashcroft, and these guys are about as far apart as anyone in the political spectrum, but they are great admirers of each other, and they are friends, and it is a common purpose that unites us. >> i mentioned earlier governor warner. you have a number of things in common. you both were paperboys. you both were leaders in your high school.
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you both got in the cellular phone business. how did you get in it? >> war and made a lot more money than i did. -- warren made a lot more money than i did. i had an opportunity given to me by a couple friends in cable television, and we were always going to do something together, and i always say, i am interested. i want to do something in government or another project, so i left the veterans administration, and they came to me and said, we think there is a new technology that is really going to develop. i was looking at different options, so i started reading everything i could about wireless. this was 1982, and at&t was
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just being invested in which opened new technology. i went to some friends of mine who were telecommunications specialists, and i was convinced this may be something pretty important that would revolutionize telecommunications, so i went back to bill and don and said, i am ready to do something. they said, you can own a third of the company. we will take the other two- thirds. you can be president. you will have the biggest share. we will control two-thirds. we will control a third, and i did not have any money. they said, that is ok. we will put what we have in, and that is how it got started.
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i had a 1985 buick and two insurance policies. i cashed in the insurance policies. i got $1,200 each. i came up with $5,000. my partner said, we will give the rest of your equity. you will be president, and we will see what we can do, and that is how it began. >> how many years were you in that business? >> we form did in august or september of 1982. we had it for three years, and then we brought some new partners in north carolina, and then we rolled are interested to that company, and i was with the
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new consolidated company from 1985 until 1987. i stayed on the board and was very active on the board. i did some management, so from 1982 until 1987, i did nothing else, and for the three years i was president, i stayed on the board of the holding company that eventually owned 36 systems with investors on the east coast. in 1988 we took that company public. >> john warner said he would not agree he was worth $200 million. >> i am just the poor republican. >> does that mean you got out of politics because you did not want to have to go back to work?
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>> i have done well. >> what was it that led you to believe you could run for senate in 1996. was that your first run? >> it was my first run other than student council president and president of my fraternity and those kinds of things. i have always thought if an opportunity presented itself for office, i would hopefully be in a position to take advantage of that. it means where are you with your family and your business and other obligations that are more important than running for office. in 1985 i looked at that. jim was up. i did not know if he was going
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to run for a fourth term or retire. i made the decision this was the right time to do it. i was 49 years old. my dear friend and business partner at the time and my other partners said, if you want to do it, go do it. my children were two years old and four years old at the time. it just was right. i felt right about it. i felt good about it, and i just decided to do it, and it is the same answer i would give you to the question about john mccain. i fully expected there would be strong opposition in the
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primary and general election. as it turned out, i announced in march of 1985 i would run. the senator announced it was my turn to run. i do not think it had anything to do with me. he wanted to retire, so i worked all of 1985 and all of 1986 everywhere. i worked as hard as i had ever worked in everything. it was one of the great experiences of my life. >> you ran against the governor. >> i ran against another governor. then i won against the incumbent governor, who is now my colleague.
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>> how did you beat him? what did you use? >> in 1986 almost every poll showed i was 25 points behind. this was three months before an election, and i think it is like everything in life. there is no magic bullet. there is no one thing but the accumulation of things, building a prospect, building a profile, building a campaign that was strong and preparing itself to eventually win. like building anything, it does not happen in a day or a month or a year. we did it right. i had tremendous people. there was a mother of four children who had never run a campaign like this before.
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i asked her to be my campaign manager. she had run campaigns for county sheriff and done well, but i brought in those kinds of people, new people and fresh people, and i worked hard and convince people i should be a united states senator, and we were able to get a lot of fresh ideas, a lot of new ideas. for example, one of the first things i did in 1985, i wrote a booklet, and it was very simple, and it said on the front, where i stand. it took 50 issues. where i stood on 50 of the biggest issues facing the country. i laid those out. a lot of people would say, why
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would you do that. i said, we are going to run a campaign people can be proud of and the senator can be proud of. that is why we conducted the campaign. we won that race with 14 points. >> this is your second. how long was your first? >> two years. >> you met lilabet what year? >> she was working as chairman for the congressman from mississippi. he was chairman of the veterans affairs committee, so that is when i first met her in 1982.
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we were married in 1985. we just celebrated our 20th wedding anniversary in april. our daughter just turned 15, and our son just turned 13, so that is a zone i am constantly understanding and learning about. our daughter is a freshman at an all girls catholic school, and our son is a freshman at an old boy is catholic school. >> would you put a label on yourself, conservative, liberal, moderate? >> i think labels come as a result of political philosophy. if you look at my voting record and you look at political philosophy, is conservative.
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i have one of the most conservative records in the senate. i suppose people are perplexed by that because i challenge my republican administration, but i do what i think is right. i say what i think is right. i do not worry about whether it is republican or democrat or conservative or republican. that is how i have lead my life. >> would you describe the president as conservative? >> i would not describe him as conservative, although five years of his policies or with a conservative political philosophy, like i voted against new child left behind. i think it was the largest federal land grab in the history of this country.
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it was the wrong thing to do. some of these things added more obligation and debt entitlements. i voted against those. it is not just the president's responsibility of governing. it is the congress, yet we have a republican congress under republican president who created more debt than anybody in the last five years in the history of our country to build a bigger government. >> nebraska since 1972 voted for a republican for president almost 2-1. do people in nebraska consider themselves as conservatives? >> i think so, but nebraska is part of the populace belt. the first populist election was held in obama ha, ha and that spread to north dakota,
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minnesota, nebraska, and chances. that is still woven into the fabric of nebraskan, and that is important, because it allows nebraskan is to challenge and probe and question. we are unique in nebraska in that we have a one-house legislature, and it is non- partisan. they do not run as democrats or republicans. they did not campaign or form a government with any party structure. the chairman is elected by the committee members. there is a tradition for that, and you look at nebraska's history, you mention voting strongly for the republican candidate. i was the first republican
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elected to the senate in 24 years. the democrats have dominated for many years out there, so it is an interesting phenomenon, but nebraska ins are independent. yes, they are conservative when it comes to governments, but they will hold deeply, and i think that gives a great dimension. >> let me ask about the conservative dimension. it seems like people who support george bush are wondering are they conservatives and what the thinking will be in 2008. we were told when president bush was campaigning republicans did not believe in the nation. they believed in a balanced
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budget. >> i do not believe that. i have always believed political leaders must be anchored with some philosophy about governance. they must be anchored with a set of standards and values. >> what is your first value? >> trust, honesty. i think everything has to emanate from that. that is the only currency you have as an elected official. >> if you run for president, somebody is going to ask will you raise taxes. how do you deal with that? >> you can deal with that the way you deal with all issues. >> will you sign that pledge? >> that is the whole point of governance. i do not believe in those kinds of things. for example, you take issues, a
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fiscal policy issue is one thing, and taxes reside in that. you take another set of issues like abortion, pro-life, pro- choice. i do not think you can negotiate those things away, and i do not put that group of issues in the same group of issues i do fiscal policies or monetary policy or foreign policy, because those shift. they must calibrates depending on issues. you have a philosophy about it. i am a low tax, low spend conservative republican. my nine years in the senate indicates that. i do not say one thing and vote another way. everything i say as back up by my voting record. on social issues, most of us do not equivocate on that. that is just what i believe.
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that is where i am. to say you are going to sign pledges on monetary issues or fiscal issues when you do not know what the world looks like in 2010, you do not know where we are going to be, i think is irresponsible. it is judgment. it is tough decisions making the hard choices. >> the prescription drug bill is nothing but a campaign promise? >> i would not say that. some of my colleagues felt strongly about it. there are only two colleagues who voted against the motion to proceed, and there were some other republicans who voted against the bill, but that did not count because of the straight majority vote. john mckenna -- john mccain and
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i were the only two. we were the only two republicans who voted to stop the bill because we thought it was irresponsible. i think there was a campaign dynamic, and i have no question in my mind there was a political dynamic to that. some of my colleagues felt strongly about that. i do not think the broad based approach worked. >> is there anything conservative about that? >> not that i am aware of. the way it was done was done dishonestly. we had a budget resolution in place that said we would not ask anything. we went over $400 billion over 10 years. it was a budget rubble rigid budget resolution in place, so
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strangely enough the and ministration came back region -- it was a budget resolution in place, so strangely enough they came out with that. they said, they were told not to give congress real numbers, that the number was somewhere in the $600 billion cost. now it is about $850 billion, and it is probably going to be in the trillions. it was very dishonest the way it was handled. >> handicapped the chances of chuck hegel being presidential. >> i do not handicapped anything. >> you will not make the decision until 20006 election? >> i will not make a decision until after the 2006 election. >> will you run for president? >> that is not my style.
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i do not think that is a fair way to do it. i do things my way. once i can make a commitment if i decide not to seek reelection and to run as president, that is what i will do. if i decide to run for a third term, that is what i will do. if i decide to get out of the senate after 12 years that is what i will do. >> what is the best thing? >> the opportunity to enhance americans and make a better world. >> thanks for joining us. >> tomorrow morning we will focus on president obama's announcement of his nominees for the defense department and cia. the former house ranking member will talk with john brennan. we will look at the nomination of senator chuck hagel to be
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defense secretary. we will be joined by the colonel with the center for new american security to talk about relations between the u.s. and afghanistan and karzai's visit to washington next week. live on c-span every day at 7:00 a.m. eastern. in a few moments a discussion about the state of the occupy movement. in an hour and a half, the chief executive officer of e.l. rothschild company on the role of capitalism. after that, google executive chairman talking about how technology affects society. and later, president obama nominates former senator chuck hagel to be defense secretary and homeland security advisor john brennan to head the c.i.a. several live events scheduled for c-span tomorrow. the urban institute hosts a
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discussion analyzing the recent debate on the so-called fiscal cliff and what's next in the debate over government spending. that's at noon eastern. and at 2:00 p.m. eastern, new jersey governor chris christie's state of the state address from trenton. >> student cam video entries with your message to the president are now due. get them into c-span by the deadline, friday, january 18. for your chance at the grand prize of $5,000. there's $50,000 in total prizes. for more details go to studentcam.org. >> up next, a forum on the occupy movement. that began in 2011. from the massachusetts institute of technology, this is an hour and a half. >> thanks very much, everyone, for coming. and thanks to the boston review and to the department of political science.
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so today we have four renowned panelists. i'm going to start off by introducing them all and then they're each going to speak for 10 minutes and then we'll have a bit of discussion between them and then we'll move to audience discussion. ok. so first, deborah is the professor of ethics in society at stanford university. she's also the senior society dean for the humanities and arts. she is a member of the philosophy department and director of the mccoy family center for ethics in society and her research focuses on the ethical limits of the markets. the place of equality in a just society and theories of rational choice. deborah also works on feminist philosophy, ethics and education and issues of international justice. she's co-editor of the fourth cummings collection "occupy future." an early participant in occupy boston. he's also a small business owner, c.e.o. of nimblebot.com,
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a marketing boutique specializing in web apps and design and co-founder of danger awesome, a laser-cutting workshop and community art store front in cambridge. he continues to be engaged in outspoken protest against government sanctions, human rights abuses, malfeasance and finance industry mismanagement. next is phil thompson, actually phil is on the end. associate professor, and i'm giving introductions in the order they will speak. phil thompson is the society professor and is an urban planner and political scientist. phil worked as deputy general manager of the new york housing authority and as director of the mayor's office of housing coordination. he's a frequent advisor to trade unions in their efforts to work with immigrant and community groups across the united states. he's the author of "double
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trouble: black mayors, black communities and the trouble for deep democracy" and he's writing a book. finally, chris hedges was awarded a 2002 pule itser prize as part of a "new york times" team of reporters who covered global terrorism. he spent almost two decades as a foreign correspondent first in latin america and later as "the new york times" bureau chief in the middle east. he's the author of many books including "days of destruction," "days of revolt," and the best selling "american fascists." he is currently a columnist for truth dig and a senior fellow at the nation institute. so, welcome all of our panelists and let's start with deborah. >> thank you. thanks to boston review for organizing this event. and i'm happy to be here. so i'm going to talk a little bit about the occupy movement, the role of the research that
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the stanford faculty engaged in. i'll talk a little bit about that. connected to occupy. then i'll talk about what i think occupy accomplished and the future. >> i think as a guiding question we can ask, what were the roots of the occupy movement and how far did it go and is it continuing to go and righting the injustices that gave rise to it? sorry. you were saying. >> great. let that be -- that's the theme for all of us. ok. so from its beginnings in 2011, the occupy movement consistently raised awareness of the glaring inequalities that now characterize american society and gavelized forms of public response. a series of largely uncoordinated sit-ins, teach-ins and protests were held and citizens came together under a exashese and inspired
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banner, we are the 99%. so what's important about that, among many things, but one thing was that it was the actions articulated a growing sense that there had to be an alternative to the status quo and they therefore should be understood in part as protests against the poverty of political imagination in the face of the economic crisis that swept the country and the globe starting in 2008. occupy opened up a wedge for changing a conversation and ultimately a direction of politics in the country. and it was this idea that it was a beginning, something began, it was a wedge, sometimes it's just important that something begins and that part of the importance, and i'll come back to this, about occupy is that something began. a group of faculty decided to add force to the wedge by
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turning their various expertise and we were a group of political scientists, economists, sociologists, philosophers, artists and literature professors, to add force to the web by developing a narrative that would undergird the broad concerns raised by the occupiers. so it's one thing to say inequality, there's a lot of growing inequality, then there's questions about, well, what makes the inequality bad? why has it happened? what can be done to combat it? so, about 13 of us issued daily short articles on different topics related to a couple of issues i'll talk about. we wanted to explore the roots of the crisis and to explore the resources we have for renewal of economic and political democracy, what
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raymond williams called resources of hope and these essays were published online in the boston review and are soon to be published like in the next month by m.i.t. press. so, our writings sought to explain and tie together four main issues that the occupy movement brought to national and international attention that are central i think to the roots, the causes of the occupy movement. so, first is the deep and growing divide between the have and have-nots in america. so across multiple areas of life, health, education, income, housing, political influence, we see the greatest inequalities the united states has noun since the great depression -- known since the great depression. in this sense we are the 99% is not just a clever rhetorical device. it's consistent with data that shows that only the top 1% of wage earners have seen their incomes rise over the last decade. the next 2% to 5% has
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experienced flat wages and everyone has has seen a drop in earnings. the trend toward increasing inequality has been going on for 30 years but has reached an unprecedented level. the top 1% has claimed nearly all the growth in income over the past 20 years. so our essays sought to clarify these trends, to explain them in pros that would be available and helpful to people and to analyze the causes of this growing inequality. that's one source of the occupy movement is this growing inequality. the second issue that occupy responded to is i think as important if not more important than inequality in itself and that's that the extreme inequality is rooted in and it self-fuels corruption. governmental interventions that favor the rich, a lack of accountability regarding those who recklessly led use in the economic crisis and a shallow
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commitment to addressing the disadvantages faced by those unlucky enough to be born to poverty. we claim to be a country committed to a fair contest in which everyone, no matter how rich or poor, has an equal opportunity to get a job and get ahead, where if you work hard and play by the rules you'll lead a decent life and not be in poverty. but instead we find the government bailing out rich wall street bankers and ignoring rest of the country. we now seem to take for granted educational inequalities in which poor children are badly educated, are unqualified for college and are increasingly con signed to low earnings and unemployment and if the deck is rigged against the poor it's quite the opposite for the rich. we simply look away at c.e.o.'s cut sweetheart deals that secure for them extraordinary compensation even as their firms fail. so the problem then is isn't just extreme inequality in itself, it's too often that
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that inequality is a product of corruption and unequal opportunity. and that's the second sort -- source for the occupy movement and a second point of its roots. a third root concerns the crisis in our government, in democracy. meaningful democracy can't exist when moneyed interests can buy elections and can lobby in ways that buy legislation. so, for example, 2/3 of americans support increasing taxes on the top 1% but an ideologically extreme faction in congress supported by moneyed interest is committed to blocking reform in this area. add to this list converted efforts to restrict or eliminate collective bargaining rights of unions, to deprive people of the right to vote and you begin to appreciate the full measure of the democratic crisis we face. fourth and final issue is the challenge of finding a way to
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manage the economy and provide a good life for everyone that's environmentally sustainable. no solution to the problems of climate disruption can be found that doesn't involve the developed world reducing its level of carbon emissions. so these four issues, inequality, corruption, inequality, corruption, crisis of democracy, sustainability fueled the occupy movement and what we tried to do was to explore and analyze the origins of -- and to see what could be done to bring our institutions into better alignment with solutions and we also wanted to bring these four issues together in a narrative and we chose to root our narrative in american ideals of freedom and
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equality. and to say that the ideals of freedom and equality, the founding ideals of this country were a lever for which to think about these four issues and then to begin to identify where we fall short and in our book we try to take up some solutions, including a millionaire's tax, financial regulatory reform and reforms through the electoral college. i said that one of the things we wanted to do was to take the wedge that was begun by occupy and press on it by developing a narrative in part because we thought that having a narrative , something beyond just a slogan but actually a narrative that you could begin to take out, to deepen and make accessible to a broad public, is a critical part of the story of successful social movements. and so that's what we try to do. but it was something we couldn't do that occupy did and
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i think this is an alternative -- and now i'll turn to what i think was the value of occupy and where i think it's going in my last two minutes. so, what occupy did was it began. and i can't underestimate the importance of that action, that beginning, to basically show us that the search for solutions and opposition isn't futile. now, you might say, well, isn't futile, some people think, well, where is occupy now a year after? i want to say quickly a couple of things about why i think it is premature to write the obituary of occupy. i think occupy was a beginning, it's not an ending, it's a lot more to be done. but i want to say why we shouldn't write its obituary. so first, there's still significant actions being taken by people inspired by the occupy movement. i'll mention one.
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strike debt which is an organization started by occupiers which has been buying up something called the rolling jubilee where it buys up debt and cancels it. there was occupy sandy, there's occupy the s.e.c., so occupy still goes on. second and most important, significant social change in this country is never -- has never come simply by conventional politics and it never comes in a straight line. it's never a simple story of movements, you know, yielding success after success. every social movement has seen ebbs and flows starting with the great antislavery movements begun in the 1700's, which nobody would have ever predicted would have ended slavery 100 years later, the civil rights movement saw ups and downs. so i think that it's just
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important to always know that social movements are not simple narrative arcs of one success after another and that brings me to the last thing i want to say which is in the end the occupy movement isn't about occupying a park or public space, it's about confronting enormous challenges that we face in america and in the globe and if we don't confront these changes we won't have a future. so one way of thinking about maybe the history of the ebbs and flows of social movements is to say, we can't -- there's no social science that writes the demise of this movement. what there is is there's always a gap where you can have hope and that's the importance of the beginning of the occupy movement, is it actually is a source of hope that people
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responded and -- to the changes in this country that really showed that there are cracks that can be exploited and i'll stop. thank you. >> thank you, debra. ok. >> she actually took my answer. [laughter] that's whafse going to say -- that's what i was going to say. i guess i'll talk a bit about my experience with occupy and probably start off with a general occupy disclaimer that it's been a long time since i was involved in occupy and that in general when people from occupy talk they speak on their own behalf and not with any special knowledge or authority over the rest of the group. but my early days started in boston when we all came together on the band stand in the park downtown in boston and tried to imagine when we would do this and how we would fit together. two groups kind of vied for
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putting it off six to eight weeks. new york had taken months to kind of come online. there had been a lot of planning. or should we start on thursday? should we start two or three days down the road? and the group that said we should start immediately ended up winning out and i think someone had said at that meeting, well, the only way to get that much work done is to then spend several all-nighters in a row getting together all of our groups, whether those groups are dissemination or communications or direct action or food or whatever it is, and actually hit the ground running on thursday. so in my studio in central square, you know, 13 to 15 people met for about 72 hours running and we got a tremendous amount of work done in those types of subgroups and we were surprisingly effective, i think, when we actually hit the ground. and then i kind of took a media
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team role, beginning to field our outreach and our messaging. along with several others who put in a lot of hours. i prepared my self for that. we kind of had a press release, even though we weren't sure if it was going to be useful and lo and behold in our fourth all-nighter in a row, it's 4:00 a.m., we're in tents, it's the first night, there's police cruising around in small numbers and the film crews start showing up and we thought, this is great, we've done a great job, it's everything we prepared for, we made this happen. we learned in retrospect that they were all there because they had heard erroneously we would be demonstrating in such a way to block morning traffic. and it was a phenomenal realization for us that going forward, making noise, would be much more effective than preparing in many cases and we fielded then straight interviews, every morning, 4:00 a.m., every afternoon, every evening for a recap, something's happened in new york, something's happened in a
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new outcropping of occupy. something's happened internationally. we want your thoughts. the whole system grew very quickly. the rest of my time was spent mostly in the kind of messaging and marketing side and in the com side. i think i realized very quickly that as these types of organizations spring up spontaneously that there's very little stepping back, everyone's very close to the issue, very close to the content, very close to the minute-by-minute and i think i spent a lot of time stepping and trying to make sure everyone was connected. the email address became the singular central mode for everyone reporting what each group was doing and then in turn became a subgroup in its own right as i trained people to handle the emails and put things on the calendar and those people in turn changed the system that we were using, improved the system beyond my capacity to close and again
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connecting teams and being very effective and proactive in that way. that's my experience with occupy. i did that for several months, probably about three months or so, and then got a little burnt out. i was working all day and then going -- at occupy and then going back to central square and working all night to get things done. as many as occupy were actually. i think the complaint was that these are unemployed hippies and these are, you know, people without direction and they're not our traditional leaders and while that statement has no merit, because anyone i think in this occupy premise or in our general american traditional premise ought to be able to participate. it also had no merit because so many of the people there eight, nine hours a day also had full time jobs. so i want to speak to the idea that occupy was leaderless and
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although i've never said it before today because i detest the phrase, i think it was leaderful. and i think that's true. we were helping one another, we were teaching one another, we were supporting one another and in a sense i think everyone outside of occupy had this feeling that if anyone were to grab the reins, if anyone were to take initiative that that would make the whole thing crumble or there would be pushback and from within it was, if you take the initiative, many will follow you, many will be inspired by that and then in turn they will expect that you teach them, bring them upy i longside you and eliminate the hierarchal construction in favor of a network-based form of teaching and learning which in my experience was a way for the organizational behavior of the group to really prove the
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model. it showed everything that researchers and theorists have said about network-based antiherk arcal models being better for innovation, being better for nimble turnaround and in many case i would saying about better for public activism. it was leaderful, we did it. i generally think that there were missed opportunities, pardon, around the organizational behavior side. i'm not halfway through with two minutes to go. so i'm also going to say briefly that we were aimful. the claim that we -- that occupy had no aim was patently ridiculous. there were so many aims and those ranged from corporate and government malfeasance on the
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financial side to mismanagement to the frustration that government seemed more interested in appearing leaderful than acting leaderful, more interested in unilateral discussions than in any kind of inclusive atmosphere. the list of aims goes way, way, way on. and the question for me was not about establishing aims or announcing aims so that the public could be satisfied. the occupy experience for me was about finding the low-hanging fruit. the things that many of us agreed on, the things that fundamentally contradicted systems of justice that we've all set up, inequity and lack of egaltarianism where we all assumed it should be all of us, the rich and the poor. if you were to say out out loud some of the things that are being done in government and finance, no one would be able to say that they were ok without sharp reprisal.
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and the fact that we don't say these things out loud and we don't say them out loud regularly is really the only reason that i can understand that they don't get taken care of, dismissed, changed, evolved. and that was my kind of core participation in occupy. to find these things together, to find this aim together and then to find a way to make change together. and i'll then echo what was said just prior to me that nothing went horribly wrong. nothing died and that all of these types of movements take a long time and if you are particularly patient and particularly grounded i think in activism then you take a 0-year view and then you take a 100-year view and if you're really good realize that your lifetime doesn't really matter particularly much and you take the 1,000-year view and i think there's a number of people who are still involved with occupy who are willing to do that.
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>> thank you very much. phil, let's hear your perspective. >> well, in terms of why occupy arose, i mean, i don't have much to add but i think that something dramatic has happened in the last 15 years or so where six banks in the united states now hold 64% or so of total wealth in this country and i think 15 years ago it was something like -- those same banks held 17%. simon johnson at sloan has numbers on this but i think that's about right. and that is an unprecedented concentration of power in a very small number of hands and i think that occupy really shined a -- shone a spotlight on that.
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and i will just say that i think that our current economic and political theories can't deal with this fact because this wasn't supposed to happen. american political science is basically pluralist in nature that says that there are contending forces in society to counter big corporations. whether it's big labor organizations or other institutions that counter that power of the corporation, but corporations will always imagine to be governed by antitrust laws, they weren't supposed to control 64 -- a handful, 64% of all the wealth in the country. that kind of power just isn't imagined in spending billions of dollars a year lobbying congress, that wasn't imagined in american political science. so i don't really think american political science has even grappled with what we have now and also our economic
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theory's always presume basically a market economy. marks may have wanted to overthrow -- marx may with a have wanted to overthrow competitive capitalism but citigroup did. when you're too big to fail, that basically means you're not a market. anymore. you know, you're into something else. and i don't think in economic theory either there are any real answers or ideas for how do you deal with a situation like this. so i think that we're in new territory and i don't even think the banks have figured out, the big banks have figured out fully how to utilize their power but this is something we all should be extremely concerned about and i think what occupy did was like sense something dramatic was happening and seize the moment. in terms of the future of occupy, i would say, or movements right now dealing with this intense corporate
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concentration of power, i think as many said, occupy was a beginning. i think there are lots of different ways to fight corporate power and that our thinking of politics really has to expand more into things like consumer organizing, using the power, you know, consumer power to boycott certain companies, to target others for, you know, to do good things. we have to fight around regulatory changes that businesses need in order to get things done, whether it's a zoning approval or a tax or a utility service plan or any number of things that businesses come to government for, seeking public approval. we have to organize shareholder power in ways that we've never
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done before. and one of the interesting things about these big banks and other big corporations now, they're public. they don't literally own, you know, 64% of the wealth of americans. all of our wealth. but we are not organized. and we tend to think of politics as voting for politicians, we don't tend to think of politics as voting as shareholders at corporate board meetings and i think we need to radically expand our notion of politics. the last thing i i think we need to radically spend a notion of politics. the last thing i want to say was that i you occupy as essentially a movement and an awakening of young students and people. that is a great thing. a real activism and political awakening.
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it's a political awakening. i do think in order to really deal with change and to make change in america, we have to think about how occupy or these predominantly young white activists connect to other movements that are fighting for or could be fighting in the same trenches along for the same things and i specifically just want to talk about movements of people of color and potential linkages here. and many folks have a mythology of what the civil rights movement was about and tend to forget it was be desegregation and people wanted to go it to schools and ride on buses. the 1963 march on washington was a march for jobs and freedom, jobs was number one. before martin luther king gave the i have a dream speech in washington, he gave to the a.f.l./c.i.o. in 1961. we don't need two movements.
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if you would agree to desegregate unions, we would have one movement. they rejected him and rejected that offer. andy young tells a story in the introduction to a book called "the closing door" and he says, you know, after king was assassinated, the johnson administration came with affirmative action and at the time, you may have read if not remembered, the civil rights movement, martin luther king had turned to full employment and poor people's campaigns as a principal demand. and the johnson administration, rather than coming up with full employment came up with affirmative action. you won't see eyes on the prize, black people marching on the street demanding affirmative action. they were demanding full
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employment and trying to reach out to whites, latinos, native americans, that was the division. when affirmative action happened, we knew it would only help the upper middle class within the black community, a very small percentage of african-americans kids were going to go to these elite colleges that affirmative action was targeted and would benefit from it. we were scared of being ostracized or attacked so we backed down and just accepted that. he said we knew that poverty would remain in these basic issues of economic injustice would remain. i say this to say that movements can be do railed. they can be intimidated. they can be distracted and generally in america, we tend to just follow the pattern of decentralized government which is a form of moderated anarchy
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and we tonight really work hard as cooperating together, period. we all kind of get excited with local empowerment and having our voices heard and whatever we're doing and we don't think build big strong movements capable of taking on concentrated power. that's wrapped to the civil rights movement. we have thousands of community development organizations in communities of color. we have lots of local environmental justice organizations. we have lots of this local empowerment. we do not have a movement anymore. i think it's important in terms of learning lessons that we not just replicate that all the time, not to just say we tonight need local empowerment and local ingenuity and all of that, that will not be enough to take on the concentrated power that exists in this country right now. last, i just want to say, i think there are many opportunities for linking the folks who have been involved
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with occupy and the kinds of fishatives that debra was talking about were very serious issues going on in communities of color right now that could really be synergistic. i'll mention 9,000 african- american homeowners in detroit are ewing morgan stan ri, people who lost their homes due to foreclosure. this is not just going after the originators of their mortgages, but wall street, the secondary port market, the folks would manipulated this stuff and that is direct connection between what occupy was fighting around and african-americans who were disproportionately, seven times more lost their homes than white americans, for example. many predominantly african- american cities and cities predominant with people of color are teetering on bankruptcy, many of them were sold bad goods, bad financial products just as were homeowners, birmingham, alabama, is an example.
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so whole cities are on the brink of bankruptcy and that, too, can be part of a movement connected to these issues. immigration, the lack of immigration reform means that there are 12 million undocumented immigrants in this country would do not have access to health insurance. at the get sick and at the die just like everybody and where do at the go? they go into hospitals in inner city communities largely because to get treated and why are they treated? if you don't treat people with t.d. and other diseases, everybody gets sick, at the get treated, but tees hospitals don't have funding to pay for it. they're not covered by medicaid, medicare, these are hospitals that people of color rely generally in inner city communities. so this is a crisis. if folks who were involved in occupy can make the link and see how it is affecting
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immediately these same issues, how it plays out if communities of color, i think there are very powerful is synergies that can be built to build a stronger movement and also i want to say that i'm very hopeful. the dream of a unified movement is a dream that's been around, i think, since the underground railroad, but i think we have to be real honest. we have never done that. we have never done that. perhaps the election of obama really what i take from it as positive, i think a lot of people aspire to that right now. this is the time. it's an historic opportunity and as some philosopher said, danger and opportunity tend to come together. we have both right now. >> let's hear your words. >> well, the occupy movement was the first point in recent
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history to respond rationally to the new configuration of power to the corporate coup day to that was undertaken, what is called our system of utilitarianism. it was an understanding that the formal organisms of power carry out the piecemeal reform as they were designed to do. essentially we are trapped if a system of political paralysis. there is an inability on the part of government to respond rationally. that is a constant theme in the columns to the problems that beset us, whether that is climate change or the financial collapse, the mortgage crisis shall the chronic underemployment, unemployment, the fact that a million people a year go bankrupt because they can't pay their medical bills, 80% of whom had had health insurance.
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all of our legislation is written by corporate lobbyists. powerly understands perfectly well what is coming and is radically reconfiguring the legal system to criminalize dissent. obama's assault on civil liberties heb far worse than the assault carried out by george w bush, whether that is the use of the 2001 authorization to use military force act to justify the assassination of american citizens, the amendment act that retroactively makes legal what under our constitution has traditionally been illegal. the wiretapping and the eavesdropping of american citizens, our personal information is being stored in supercomputers in utah, the use of the espionage act six times to shut down whistleblowers.
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it was used three times until obama came to office shall the first time as a former investigative reporter, you cannot do anything to challenge the official government narrative. you can't even get ballgame briefings because people are frightened of going to jail and the national defense authorization act which obama signed too law on december 31, section 1021 permits the u.s. military to seize u.s. citizens, strip them of due process, hold them in military facilities indefinitely. i sued the president over this in federal court. i won in september and the obama administration appealed. what was fascinating is to they went to judge katherine forest after she gave her technician if her 112-page opinion which is really a brilliant kind of dissection of the destruction of
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the separation of powers and is worth reading, asked for an emergency stay meaning they wanted the law put back into effect physical the appellate court would hear the case. some he refused. they demanded an emergency hearing with the appellate court at 9:00 a.m. if the morning the next monday for an emergency hearing and an emergency stay which they got. the only reason that i and the lawyers can make out is that the obama administration reacted so aggressively is because they're already using it, probably on pakistani u.s. dowel nationals. the inability to curb wall street, a close examination of the obama health care bill which was written by corporate lobbyists, in particular ms. fowler who has gone back into the industry. the inability to deal with the most important crisis that is confronting us, that is climate
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change, the fact that the obama percentages has not only approved the southern leg of the excel pipeline but certainly appears to being going to approve the northern leg. all of these are indications that essentially power has been rusted from the hadn't of the citizenry. there is to way within the american political system anymore to vote against the interests of corporations like exxonmobil or goldman sachs. and occupy understood this and they understood, number one, where power had been transferred to. that was from the legislative bodies and the judicial bodies and of course the press, let's not forget the press has been completely corporatized. you talked about banks, roughly a half dozen corporations, viacom, general electricity, rupert murdoch, disney, clear channel, control almost everything americans listen to or watch, crating this faux
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narrative, on the one hand it's court gossip from fox or msnbc. justall the same junk, spun differently. the real substantial issues that matter to the majority of american citizens are never mentioned. it reminds me of what dorothy parker once said about katharine hepburn's emotional range as an actress, it goes from a to b. step outside of that paradigm and you instantly become a pariah as anybody at m.i.t. knows noah alcohol ski's great work will tell you or ralph nader who has been fighting corporations and understands corporate power better than anyone in this country. occupy grasped that. they also grasped that the only mechanism we have left by which we can save ourselves is civil disobedience and they courageously carried out those acts of civil disobedience repeatedly.
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what was the response of the state? the response of the state was to move in and physically eradicate the encamp it's in a coordinated effort run by the obama understanding. this movement terrified the power elite and in particular the democratic party, this kind of faux liberalism that speaks in the traditional feel your pain language and has abandoned the very constituency that they purport to represent. that is very dangerous. i covered the war in the former yugoslavia for the "new york times." i watched what political paralysis does. that is essentially what has happened. we have a system that is incapable of responding to the legitimate grievances and injustices to are being visited on tens of millions of americans. half of this country is leaving in poverty or a category called near poverty. what is the response of the corporate state? it is to cut unemployment benefits for hundreds of
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thousands of americans, which means tens of thousands of these people are going to lose their homes and they're all about to push us over the so- called fiscal cliff. corporations know only one word and that's more. and because all of the restraints, the regulations, and the impediment to corporate power have been lifted, they have as marx understood, commodified everything, you see 40% of the summer arctic sea ice melts and shell and exxon look at it as a business opportunity. it's insanity. we are now all aboard the ship, moby dick, the study of the american character and ahab is in charge. and as ahab said, "my means and my methods are sane. only my object is mad."
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the inability to stand up, whether it's over the inevitable financial dislocation, these people are harvesting the country. anytime hedge fund manages and let's never -- managers, and let's never forget at institutions like this, half of the trustee boards come from this class. most of them should be in jail. when they walk into inner city areas and talk about poor children's education, it's not because they want kids to read and write. the because they know federal government spend $600 billion a year on education and they want it and they're going to get it. there is no mechanism left except civil disobedience and having covered movements all around the world, the revolutions in eastern europe, the two palestinian uprisings, the street demonstrations that brought down milosevic, you know the tinder is there. i spent the last two years in the poorest pockets of it
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country from camden, new jersey, to the produce fields in florida and the coal fields in southern west virginia, you know the tinder is there. you don't know what is going to set it off. it's usually something relatively benign. an elderly woman gets foreclosed if her home in utah or something. i know it's coming. will it look like occupy? will it be called occupy? you can never know. i think it's better to think of occupy not as a movement, but as a tactic. rosa parks refuses to move on the bus. it's five years until we see the freedom rides. and because the state has not responded rationally, because the state has proved paralyzed, because it not only cannot address the grievances but essentially allows corporations to extract more and more and more in this reconfiguration too a form of neofeudalism, all i can tell you as a reporter is
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that something is coming. tothanks, we'll move on discussions. \[applause] >> so thank you very much for your incredibly powerful statements. i think one of the questions that comes to me is with a exactly is occupy? it's been mentioned as a tactic, for example, it is a way of organizing videos to respond rationally -- videos to respond rationally what is happening. there is an agreement of the panelists of where the problems are, but less agreement on what occupy actually is and if it can become what it feeds to be in order to respond to the big problems. so, for example, do we need a big strong movement as phil was pointing to?
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can occupy become a big strong movement without losing sort of its essential character, what seemed to be push pore local, much more spontaneous. much more sort of democratic in ways that seems sometime to be fragmenting. these are perceptions of occupy, but can it become this without seizing to be occupy? or is occupy a tactic that anybody can use at any moment? would somebody like to -- >> let me add quickly that there was a process within occupy, and they lost control, the particular moment was when the individual tents went up. at the had been able to keep alcohol and drugs out. once the tents went up, they came in, activists were staying up all night in de-escalation teams and we were also seeing the nypd dropping homeless people off to essentially
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overload the system. so by the end, at least within new york, i don't know what your experience in boston was that the park didn't work. consensus worked very well. when you have small groups, it worked very well at the beginning. it did not work well with 4,000 people especially with the capacity for a bloc. i went get too caught up in -- movements and i speak as someone who covered them. movements have a kind of mysterious life force of their own. it's always the ruling class that determines the configuration of rebellion or response. the inability of the ruling class or the ruling elite in the united states to respond rationally to the grievances that drove people into these parks means that something will spring up inevitably.
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>> i would like toty that it is probably eminently possible for occupy to deprow as part of a number of national and international kind of phone calls and virtual meetings and they went well bringing back knowledge and sharing power all went well at scale. i tend to think that the minute problem was that our focus became the day-to-day running of the camp and we saw b.p.d. driving people to the camp that became difficult to manage. there is a lot of mental health issues, a lot of other issues entailed by running a camp. i think separating the camp aspects from the movement aspects will certainly help in scaling the program. i think it's possible.
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>> i don't think civil disobedience is enough and i worked as a movement organizer for many years. i made $50 a woke and when i had had kid, i just couldn't live on $50 a week. i don't think you can build a model sustained over time as like student movements where you go out for a brief time, you take action and then it's over and you go look for a job, right? then it's over. i think we have to have are a much more sophisticated approach. i also think we node appear approach that my mother can get involved in. she is 82 years old and if a wheelchair but she voted for obama thinking that that was fighting the system.
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there has to be ways to get my mother involved. when i was a kid, people, my father was a minister, very active if the civil rights movement. what people don't see on the tv shows about the civil rights movement were the years of conversations every sunday with people in church to tell them they are people, they are children of god, that was the story line and god doesn't make children or junkie children and they are as good as anyone. it took years of that to build their confidence, to get item to the point of taking action. and it's not just something i don't think that happens spontaneously. it may in some cases, but i don't think we're going to build a really strong, really powerful, really broad movement just waiting for some spark.
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there is a lot of education that has to happen. firstom philadelphia, my was boycotting tasty cake, they make crumpets and little cupcakes and coca cola. that's because the other movement organizers found ways to involve 7-year-olds in the movement. that was boycotting tasty cake and coca cola. i think we have to have a lot of tactics, a lot of strategies in order to bring people together. we need to have some difficult conversations about race. a lot of institutions played in it, things are just more complicated than that. there are a lot of unions that lobbied and got stuff stuck if the bill for example. and obama in my opinion is a
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transition figure appearing that he embodies everything that has been said at the table, both in terms of corporate influence but absolutely huge numbers of people who voted for him, that pushed for things that he included as well. that's why he is a transition figure. i think, he is a reflection of kind of where we are as a country and where we are as a movement. >> what happens when you have a chicago teachers strike is obama turns his back on him? when you have the bailout of the auto industry, they crush the u.a.w. i think that obama like clinton is a figure who essentially serves corporate interests but speaks if the tradition language of liberalism. there is hardly a campaign promise from 2008 that barack obama hasn't broken including supporting unions and raising the minimum wage. i think that that goes back to
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the point that it's the engines of corporate power that drive the political process and the economic process. the personal narrative of barack obama is irrelevant. that's why there is such continuity, whether it is i am purely war, assault on civil liberties, failure to curb wall street from bush to obama. those who actually decide and we just went through a 2.5 billion electoral charade are not in the white house. in terms of build a movement, yes, you're right. all of those activities have to be done and they are being done. but they're being done on a push smaller scale. that was exactly what i saw in eastern europe. if you saw, for instance, in leipzig, week after week the candlelight vigils against the communist dictatorship and suddenly 70,000 people showed up.
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this is what havel points out in his essay, the power of the powerless, living in truth. you're exactly right, those activities have to be carried out. working with the occupy movement after the destruction, there is a clear kind of despair. i think we have to% that we have to keep going, this is with a occupy sandy has done. because as havel points out we are exposing a decayed, corrupt system that no longer responded to the needs of the citizenry, that's why they're so frightened of the occupy movement itself. >> you have the last word and we'll open the mics. start thinking about your questions. >> i want to grow with phil about the importance of deepening the connection between the rage and response of
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occupy with existing institutional structures. so i don't think -- i mean, we don't live in a totalitarian world where the only thing anybody can do is take to the streets there are other forms of mobilization, of power, that are out there, whether it's in the labor movement or in shareholders organizations or -- anyway, there are other forms of opposition and one of the things that i think is very important, social movements, there is no science, i agree they have to come outside, change doesn't happen only by the internal political process, in fact, it almost never happened by that alone. there has to be points of pressure, but social movements don't succeed when they don't tell a union night narrative
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that lots of people can sign on and get onboard, it is clear, it's hopeful, it has some solutions and they don't succeed when they don't deepen their roots in communities who have the grievances that they're taking up. when you come if from outside -- and occupy wasn't just from outside. occupy did bring if some of the people who were absolutely on the front lines of those grievances. there are many, many other people who are suffering in the ways that you were describing that weren't brought on. unless you link out to those people and tell a story that brings those people onboard, you're not going to in the end have a successful social movement. i think occupy, as i said, it's very important because if the absence of something like occupy, you could feel like there was no hope and the fact that people responded is a sign of hope, but it has to deepen and it has to